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Spain’s King Felipe VI self-isolating after contact with coronavirus case

Spain's King Felipe VI is self-isolating after coming into contact with a person who tested positive for Covid-19, the palace said Monday."

Spain's King Felipe VI self-isolating after contact with coronavirus case
Photo: AFP

A person with whom he was in contact yesterday tested positive for Covid-19 today,” the palace said in a statement, adding that the 52-year-old monarch had suspended all official activities for 10 days.

“In conformity with health rules, he will observe a preventative quarantine for 10 days starting now,” the statement said.   

Queen Letizia and the royal couple's daughters Leonor and Sofia “may continue their activities normally”, it added.

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.

Spain is among the countries hardest hit by the coronavirus pandemic with more than 1.5 million cases and more than 43,000 deaths.

READ MORE: Which travellers must show negative Covid-19 test on arrival in Spain?

 

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COVID-19

Did Sweden’s state epidemiologist really get a big job at the WHO?

For his supporters, it was well-deserved, for his detractors a case of failing upwards. But when Sweden's Public Health Agency announced this month that state epidemiologist Anders Tegnell was taking a job at the World Health Organisation, both sides assumed it was true.

Did Sweden's state epidemiologist really get a big job at the WHO?

Now, it seems, the job might not be there after all. 

At the start of this month, Sweden’s Public Health Agency announced that Anders Tegnell was resigning to take up a post coordinating vaccine work with the World Health Organisation in Geneva. 

“I’ve worked with vaccines for 30 years and have at the same time always been inspired by international issues,” Tegnell said in the release. “Now I will have the chance to contribute to this comprehensive international work.”

During the first and second waves of the Covid-19 pandemic, Tegnell shot immediately from obscurity into the spotlight, gaining such celebrity status in Sweden that one fan had his profile tattooed onto his arm.

Internationally he was hailed by lockdown sceptics for his reasoned arguments against overly restrictive measures to control the spread of the virus. 

His new WHO appointment was reported all over the world. 

But on Tuesday, the Svenska Daglabdet newspaper revealed that the job had not yet been awarded. A spokesperson for the WHO said at a press conference in Geneva that “there is some confusion”, and that “this is an internal question.” 

According to the newspaper, there is even “a certain level of irritation” behind the scenes at the WHO that Sweden acted too soon and dispatched Tegnell to a job that did not actually exist yet. 

“We have received an offer from Sweden, which is still under discussion,” the organisation’s press spokesperson, Fadela Chaib, told the newspaper. 

On Thursday, the Public Health Agency’s press chief Christer Janson conceded that there had been a mistake and that the negotiation had not been completed.  

“We believed it was done, but it wasn’t,” he told Expressen in an interview. “It’s been a much longer process to get this completed than we thought. There’s been a misunderstanding and we regret that.” 

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