It was Thursday last week that King Harald and Queen Sonja became two of tens of thousands of Norwegians that were quarantined in their own homes. This happened after the Norwegian government decided to introduce quarantine for all Norwegians who had returned from abroad after 28 February as a measure to reduce the risk of spread of the coronavirus in Norway, which is severely affected by Covid-19.
Today, Friday, is two weeks since the royals returned from their journey. King Harald and Queen Sonja returned to Norway on Wednesday, March 4 after their state visit to Jordan. That was the 50th state visit in King Harald’s time as a monarch and the very first state visit to the Middle East.
Because it is now 14 days since they returned home, the quarantine is officially over. The royals have for so long been at the king’s cottage which is located in the outskirts of the capital of Oslo. It is uncertain whether the royals will continue to be at the cottage or if they will travel in to Oslo Palace. It is still expected that the King and Queen will remain at the lodge until the situation in Norway is better.
On Thursday the royal court published a message from the king and queen on Facebook. It was a picture of the two royals walking around the royal lodge to get some fresh air and exercise with the message: “Thanks for all of you doing what you can, both in the community and at home to get us through this together! We also want to thank you for all your kind regards and consideration.” The message has on Facebook alone received 19.000 likes in less than 12 hours.
The Royal Court on Thursday morning last week issued a statement announcing that the Norwegian Royal Family will cancel all public events until Easter. Council of states and other governmental-meeting will still continue. His Majesty led the council of state by phone two times while he was in quarantine. So far, no special information has come out about the Crown Prince couple and the remaining members of the royal family. Crown Prince Haakon was personally present at the council of state on both Friday and Sunday. Crown Princess Mette Marit, who has a lung disease, is probably isolated on a voluntary basis in her home at the Skaugum estate in Asker.
His Majesty King Harald addressed the Norwegian people from his quarantine on Sunday. Then His Majesty said: “My thoughts and prayers are with all the children, who may be particularly anxious now, and whom we must take extra care of. I would like to remind you that everyone needs some extra kindness during this time. Together we stand in this. And together we will be able to get through what lies ahead.”
Friday morning a total of seven people has died of Covid19 in Norway. At least 1,752 has the virus and 107 have been admitted to hospital. The borders, airports, harbours, schools, universities, restaurants and so much more remain closed.