83-year-old King of Norway Hospitalised

The palace said his son, Crown Prince Haakon, has stepped in and taken over his father’s duties, including a scheduled meeting with the Norwegian government.

Harald ascended the throne upon the death of his father King Olav on Jan. 17, 1991.

The country’s first native-born king since the 14th century, he married a commoner as a prince and won hearts in his egalitarian country by leading the mourning in 2011 for the victims of mass killer Anders Behring Breivik.

In 2016, a speech by Harald in support of gay rights and diversity attracted widespread international attention. “Norwegians are girls who love girls, boys who love boys, and girls and boys who love each other,” he said.

The speech was shared tens of thousands of times on social media.

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