Spain’s King Felipe VI is self-isolating after coming into contact with someone who tested positive for Covid-19, the palace said Monday.
The 52-year-old monarch, who was chairing a meeting of his Scientific Council in Madrid earlier today, has suspended his official duties for the next ten days.
He learned that he had come into contact with someone the day before he had since tested positive for Covid-19.
Queen Letizia, 48, and the royal couple’s daughters Leonor, 15, and Sofia, 13, will not be isolating, the palace said.
King Felipe VI of Spain (left) chairing a meeting of the Scientific Council of the Elcano Royal Institute in Madrid on Monday
King Felipe VI and Queen Letizia attend the ‘Francisco Cerecedo’ awards 2020 at the El Prado Museum on November 18, 2020 in Madrid
King Felipe VI of Spain, Queen Letizia of Spain (far right), Crown Princess Leonor (right) and Princess Sofia visit Somao on October 17, 2020
It comes after Crown Princess Leonor, 15, self-isolated for two weeks in September after a Covid-19 infection was detected among her classmates. She later tested negative.
Letizia was also forced to self-isolate earlier this year following a meeting with Spain’s Equality Minister Irene Montero before she tested positive.
Felipe VI ascended to the throne in July 2014 following the abdication of his scandal-plagued father Juan Carlos I.
The 82-year-old Lothario is the subject of ongoing corruption probes, the latest opened this month following a report which alleged he had used credit cards linked to foreign accounts not in his name.
The former king was already the target of official investigations in Spain and Switzerland for possible financial wrongdoing.
Those investigations prompted him to leave Spain in August and he was reported to be holed up with his mistress in Abu Dhabi.
epa08830889 Spanish Queen Sofia (R) and Spanish Federation of the Food Banks (FESBAL in Spanish symbols) president Juan Vicente Peral (L) during her visit to the headquarters of this organitation in Madrid, Spain on 20 November 2020
His son’s self-isolation for coronavirus comes as Spain has registered more than 1.58 million COVID-19 cases – western Europe’s second highest tally after France – and 43,131 deaths.
The overall number of infections has grown by almost 26,000 since Friday and the number of deaths has increased by 512, the Health Ministry said on Monday.
New infections measured over the past 14 days fell to 374 per 100,000 people as of Monday, from 530 in the first week of November.
The country is preparing for a comprehensive vaccination program in January and expects to have covered a substantial proportion of the population within six months.
Spain’s King Felipe VI speaks to his wife Queen Letizia during the 2020 Princess of Asturias award ceremony at the Reconquinta Hotel in Oviedo on October 16, 2020
King Felipe VI and Queen Letizia of Spain attend a mass to mark the Day of Galicia at the church of San Martino Pinario in Santiago de Compostela, Galicia, Spain, 25 July 2020.
Prime Minister Pedro Sanchez said on Sunday that 13,000 vaccination centres had been established to drive the program.
‘A very substantial part of the population will be able to be vaccinated, with all guarantees, in the first half of the year,’ Sanchez told a news conference after a two-day online summit of G20 leaders.
Spain will implement a single national strategy, starting with ‘priority groups,’ Sanchez said, adding that he would present the plan to the cabinet on Tuesday. He also said more health professionals would be recruited.
‘We have a tough few months ahead of us but the road map has been drawn up,’ Sanchez said.