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King Vajiralongkorn taken to hospital as bodyguard tests positive for COVID-19

Thai Public Relations Department Handout

King Vajiralongkorn of Thailand was taken to Bangkok Hospital after one of his bodyguards tested positive for COVID-19.

The Thai King was taken to the hospital around midnight on the 21st of October and only stayed for about two hours. It is unclear why exactly he was so briefly hospitalised or whether he was tested for COVID-19. King Vajiralongkorn arrived from Germany, where he usually lives, on the 10th of October, but neither he nor any of his entourage was quarantined upon arrival in Thailand. The bodyguard who tested positive is known to have travelled with him from Germany.

The following day, King Vajiralongkorn and Queen Suthida attended the cremation of Prime Minister Prayut Chan-ocha’s father, even though it was unclear if the couple had been tested for COVID-19. None of those present appeared to be wearing masks.

King Vajiralongkorn lives in Germany with a large harem of women, while his wife Queen Suthida lives in a hotel in Switzerland. This is the first time in a while that the two have spent a significant amount of time in Thailand as October usually has a high number of royal ceremonies. The King has been met by fierce protests in his country, which due to the strict lese-majeste laws in Thailand could see protesters end up with long jail sentences.