The Princess Royal has touched down on the African island of Madagascar, despite warnings from UK authorities not to visit the country following an outbreak of plague.
The Queen’s daughter, accompanied by her Private Secretary Captain Nicholas Wright, departed from Heathrow Airport on Sunday and arrived on the island earlier today.
More than 100 people have been killed to date by the infectious disease, and a further 1,300 people have been infected.
Health officials report that the plague is extremely contagious because it can be transmitted from person-to-person through the air as well as from animals bites.
Although the plague occurs regularly in Madagascar, health officials warn that this disease is spreading at an “alarming rate.”
Speaking to The Sun, Jimmy Whitworth, a professor of International Public Health at the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine, said: “It has been a long time since we have seen the plague in an urban environment.
“The risk of it spreading internationally is low. But the risk of this continuing to spread within Madagascar is still quite high.”
Princess Anne is in Madagascar for just under a week and will undertake a variety of engagements across the island.
On her first day in the country, The Queen’s daughter attended The Duke of Edinburgh’s International Award Ceremony at Iavoloha Palace.
Later in the evening, the 67-year-old attended a dinner given by President Rajaonarimampianinaof of Madagascar in the nation’s capital, Antananarivo.
On Tuesday, the Princess will attend a Service of Thanksgiving to commemorate the 200th anniversary of the signing of the Treaty of Friendship between the United Kingdom and Madagascar at Saint Laurent Anglican Cathedral.
She will also visit charities and organisations of which she has close connections to, including Save The Children and conservation projects.