Norway’s king tests positive for COVID, has mild symptoms

COPENHAGEN, Denmark (AP) — Norway’s 85-year-old King Harald V tested positive for the coronavirus on Tuesday and has mild symptoms, royal officials said.

Harald will take a break from his duties for a few days and that his son and heir to the throne, Crown Prince Haakon, would take them over for now, the royal household said in a brief statement.

Harald has received three COVID-19 vaccine shots, although he’s been ill several times in recent years, including in 2020 when he had an operation for a new heart valve.

Harald’s duties as Norway’s head of state are ceremonial, and he holds no political power. He ascended to the throne following the death of his father, King Olav, on Jan. 17, 1991.

Harald, the country’s first native-born king since the 14th century, married a commoner as a prince and won hearts in his egalitarian country by leading the mourning in 2011 for the victims of mass killer Anders Behring Breivik.

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