Norway

King Harald to remain in hospital until next week


Oskar Aanmoen/Royal Central

On Wednesday, it was announced that His Majesty King Harald V of Norway was hospitalised. King Harald was admitted to the National Hospital in Oslo because of dizziness. The statement from the Royal Court said: “His Majesty King Harald was admitted to the National Hospital today because of dizziness. No serious illness has been found. The King is expected to be discharged before the weekend. The King has cancelled his duties for two weeks. During this period, His Royal Highness Crown Prince Haakon is acting regent.”

On Thursday, the Royal Court confirmed His Majesty was still in hospital. Friday came a more detailed update on the King’s presence and illness was released revealing His Majesty would remain in hospital for the foreseeable future.

No further information was provided at that time.

However, just a little bit later, the Royal Court announced to NRK, “His Majesty is admitted to the National Hospital. The King is in the process of improvement and is expected to be discharged next week.”

King Harald was scheduled to attend, on Tuesday, the official opening of a large oil field, the so-called Johan Sverdrup field, in the North Sea. Due to the stresses of Ari Behn’s death, the Royal Court announced Monday afternoon that the King could not attend. A brief statement from the Royal Court stated: “Due to recent stresses, His Majesty the King will not participate in the opening of the Johan Sverdrup oil field as planned.” Ari Behn, Princess Märtha Louise’s ex-husband, was buried following a funeral at Oslo Cathedral on Friday  after taking his life on Christmas Day.

This is not the first time that King Harald’s health has given cause for concern in recent weeks. In December, the 82-year-old suffered a viral infection which led the Royal Court to announce that Crown Prince Haakon was appointed as temporary regent of Norway for the duration of the illness. When King Harald became ill in April 2018 as a result of congestion and pain in one foot, Crown Prince Haakon stepped in as regent for his father during his illness.

The King has had several health challenges the recent years, and although the Crown Prince has stepped in for his father on several occasions, Harald has no plans to pass on his role to his son. King Harald has, on several occasions, stated that it is out of the question for him to abdicate. However, his health is closely watched. Many reacted strongly in October 2019 when, for the first time in his reign, King Harald had to take the elevator and did not use the stairs when he opened the Norwegian parliament.



About author

Senior Europe Correspondent Oskar Aanmoen has a master in military and political history of the Nordic countries. He has written five books on historical subjects and more than 700 articles for Royal Central. He has also interview both Serbian and Norwegian royals. Aanmoen is based in Oslo, Norway.