King of Norway Hospitalised in Oslo

A portrait photo of the King of Norway
The King of Norway. Photo: Jørgen Gomnæs / The Royal Court.

The 83-year-old King of Norway has been taken to hospital in Oslo this morning.

King Harald V was admitted to Oslo's Rikshospitalet on Friday morning. The 83-year-old monarch was admitted because of heavy breathing, but COVID-19 has been ruled out.

In the early hours on Friday, two ambulances and two bodyguard cars transported the King from Bygdø Kongsgård in Oslo to Rikshospitalet. The seriousness of the condition is not yet known. However, Queen Sonja visited the King this morning but has since left by car for an official engagement in Lillehammer.

It is the second time the King has been hospitalised this year. Previously, the admission was for dizziness.

UPDATE: The King will undergo heart surgery

Royal expert Anders Johan Stavseng told Dagbladet that it takes a lot before King Harald cancels an engagement. Today the royal couple had been due to attend Lillehammer's Maihaugen for a ceremony to mark the completion of the Queen's childhood home at the open-air museum, “so something has probably happened here that those around them, or the king himself, have decided that a further check is needed.”

Crown Prince temporarily takes over duties

King Harald had been out and about as recently as yesterday, when he disembarked the royal ship in Oslo accompanied by the Queen and the Crown Prince. Today's hospital admission means that Crown Prince Haakon will take over the king's duties at short notice.

Read more: The Royal Family of Norway

The royal court published the following message on Friday morning: “His Majesty the King on sick leave. His Majesty King Harald was admitted to Rikshospitalet early today. The Crown Prince Regent will lead the state council today.”

The Norwegian Royal Couple
Queen Sonja and King Harald (Photo: Jørgen Gomnæs / The Royal Court)

Good wishes from all

Leaders of Norway's political parties have been quick to send their best wishes. The King's regular meeting with the prime minister Erna Solberg scheduled for today has of course been cancelled. Solberg said to VG: “I wish the King a good recovery.”

It's been a busy morning for Jonas Gahr Støre, the leader of Norway's main opposition Labour Party. Following the presentation of his party's program for the next election, he also wished the King a good recovery, adding that the incident has made an impression on many, including himself:

“There are many in Norway today who think about this. I want to say from our side that we wish the king a good recovery.”

Minister of Culture Abid Raja was among other senior figures to send his best wishes. He told VG: “The King represents the whole of Norway in an exceptionally inclusive and generous way.”

Official portrait of the Norwegian Royal Family
Photo: The Royal House of Norway

The King of Norway

Harald V became the King of Norway following the death of his father, King Olav V, on 17 January 1991. He was the third child and only son of Olav and his wife, Princess Märtha of Sweden.

A keen sportsman, he represented Norway in sailing at the 1964, 1968, and 1972 Olympic Games. Harald married Sonja Haraldsen in 1968, together having two children, Märtha Louise and Håkon. Crown Prince Håkon is the heir to the throne.

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About the Author: David Nikel

Originally from the UK, David now lives in Trondheim and was the original founder of Life in Norway back in 2011. He now works as a professional writer on all things Scandinavia.


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