Denmark’s Prince Joachim, the youngest son of Queen Margrethe II, is in a stable condition following surgery on a brain clot in France, the palace said Sunday.
“Prince Joachim’s situation is still stable. He is doing well in the circumstances,” the Ritzau news agency quoted the palace as saying after the prince’s surgery on Friday at Toulouse University Hospital.
Joachim, 51 and sixth in line to the Danish throne, was holidaying with his family at Cayx, a chateau the royal family owns in southwestern France, when he was taken ill.
The palace added that Joachim, contrary to earlier Danish media reports saying he had been taken by helicopter, was driven by ambulance to the hospital, 130 kilometres (90 miles) away.
“It is too early to say right now,” palace spokeswoman Lene Balleby said with regard to how long the prince would remain hospitalised.
He became ill shortly after an interview for a local paper with French reporters, who described a “relaxed” encounter.
Joachim, whose late father, Prince Consort Henrik was of French origin, is the younger brother of Crown Prince Frederik, who is in line to succeed their 80-year-old mother.
Twice-married Joachim, an army colonel of the reserve, is a father of four — two sons Nikolai, 20, and Felix, 18 from his first marriage and two with second wife Princess Marie — Henrik, 11), and Athena, eight.
Joachim is due to begin serving as military attache at the Danish embassy in Paris in September.
Denmark said Monday it would offer all adults the chance to be tested for the new coronavirus, including those who have no symptoms, as the country recorded its smallest rise in cases in two months.
“All adults in Denmark can now make an appointment on their own for a COVID-19 test,” the health ministry said in a statement, with a link to a website to make an appointment.
Until now, only those with symptoms could be tested, once they had received the green light from their doctor.
On Monday, the country registered 41 new cases, the smallest increase since mid-March, bringing the total number to 11,166.
“We’ve brought the infection rate down to a very low level. It’s imperative that there be no hidden pockets of infection that could cause the spread of the virus to increase,” Health Minister Magnus Heunicke said.
The test being offered detects an active case of the virus, and is not an antibody test that determines whether a person has been infected at some point.
After announcing strict measures to curb the virus on March 11, the Scandinavian country was the first in Europe to reopen nursery and primary schools on April 15.
Since then, a number of restrictions have been eased, including the reopening of hair salons, dentists’ practices and tattoo parlours, as well as shopping centres and department stores.
On Monday, cafes, bars and restaurants reopened.
The infection rate has since dropped, from 1.0 in late April to 0.7 in the first week of May, health authorities said.
A reproduction rate of 1.0 means that one person with COVID-19 infects on average just one other, while a rate of below 1.0 indicates that the spread is declining.
Denmark has confirmed 548 COVID-19 deaths since the start of the pandemic.
Denmark began reopening schools on Wednesday after a month-long closure over the novel coronavirus, becoming the first country in Europe to do so.
Nurseries, kindergartens and primary schools were reopening, according to an AFP correspondent, after they were closed on March 12 in an effort to curb the COVID-19 epidemic.
However classes are only resuming in about half of Denmark’s municipalities and in about 35 percent of Copenhagen’s schools, as other have requested more time to adjust to health protocols still in place.
All are expected to reopen by April 20.
In early April the country’s centre-left government announced that schools would be reopened “on the condition that everyone keeps their distance and washes their hands.”
Schools are required to ensure that a distance of two metres (about six feet) is maintained between desks in classrooms and recesses must be organised for small groups.
To adhere to guidelines, many schools favour outdoor classes, presenting a challenge for schools in urban areas.
Some parents have opposed the reopening of schools, citing health concerns. A petition dubbed “My child is not a guinea pig” has garnered some 18,000 signatures.
Henrik Wilhelmsen, principal of a school in the Norrebro district said that they “expect quite a lot of children to be kept at home.”
Middle and high school students, will continue remote classes and are only expected to return to classrooms on May 10.
As of Tuesday, Denmark had 6,691 confirmed cases of the new coronavirus and 299 deaths.
The country has banned gatherings of more than 10 people and bars, restaurants, hairdressers, shopping malls and clubs have been closed.
Before Denmark, Austria was the first European country to unveil its roadmap for a return to a “new normal”.
On Tuesday, it allowed small non-food shops to open up, while maintaining social distancing rules and requiring masks to be worn in shops and on public transport.
Austria plans to keep schools, cafes and restaurants closed until at least mid-May.
Kasper Schmeichel produced a series of excellent saves as Denmark defeated Switzerland 1-0 in Euro 2020 qualifying Saturday to pull level with Republic of Ireland in Group D.
Leicester City goalkeeper Schmeichel pulled off superb stops to deny Granit Xhaka, Admir Mehmedi and Ricardo Rodriguez before Yussuf Poulsen grabbed an 84th-minute winner for Denmark in Copenhagen.
The Danes moved up to 12 points alongside group leaders Ireland, who drew 0-0 away to Georgia, while Switzerland are four points off the pace but with a game in hand.
Mick McCarthy’s Ireland couldn’t establish any momentum earlier in the day in Tbilisi and were left frustrated by wayward finishing from their few opportunities to break the deadlock.
Romania took over second place in Group F following a 3-0 win in the Faroe Islands secured by second-half goals from George Puscas, Ionut Mitrita and Claudiu Keseru.
Sweden could move back above Romania with victory in Malta later although defeat would open the door for three-time European champions Spain to secure qualification with a win away to Norway.
Italy, who have six wins from six in Group J, can clinch their place at the finals with victory over Greece in Rome.
Bosnia and Herzegovina reignited their qualification hopes with a 4-1 win over second-placed Finland.
A brace from Juventus midfielder Miralem Pjanic and goals from Izet Hajrovic and Armin Hodzic pushed Bosnia to within two points of Finland, who could be joined by Armenia if they beat Liechtenstein in Vaduz.
Denmark’s prime minister said Wednesday she was “annoyed and surprised” that US President Donald Trump postponed a visit after her government said its territory Greenland was not for sale but insisted their ties remained strong.
“I am both annoyed and surprised that the US president has cancelled a state visit,” Prime Minister Mette Frederiksen told reporters.
But, she added, “Denmark and the US are not in crisis, the US is one of our closest allies.”
The Scandinavian country’s invitation to visit “remains open,” she said.
Trump had tweeted on Tuesday that “based on Prime Minister Mette Frederiksen’s comments, that she would have no interest in discussing the purchase of Greenland, I will be postponing our meeting scheduled in two weeks for another time.”
The Wall Street Journal first reported that Trump had expressed interest in the self-governing part of Denmark — which is mostly covered in ice.
The president, a former real estate magnate, has been curious about the area’s natural resources and geopolitical relevance, the paper said.
The proposal had sparked both indignation and amusement in Denmark.
Greenland’s foreign affairs ministry said the island was ready to talk business but was not for sale, while Frederiksen has described the idea as “absurd”.
Trump had been scheduled to visit Denmark on September 2 and 3.
Denmark was left stunned Wednesday by Donald Trump’s decision to postpone a state visit after the government told the US president its autonomous territory Greenland was not for sale.
The Danish Royal House expressed “surprise” at Trump’s cancellation while commentators accused Trump of acting like a “colonial overlord”.
“Based on Prime Minister Mette Frederiksen’s comments, that she would have no interest in discussing the purchase of Greenland, I will be postponing our meeting scheduled in two weeks for another time,” Trump tweeted on Tuesday.
“The Prime Minister was able to save a great deal of expense and effort for both the United States and Denmark by being so direct.”
His comments came two days after Frederiksen had rejected the president’s proposal to possibly buy Greenland as “absurd”.
The decision confirms just how interested he was in purchasing Greenland, an idea initially dismissed as a joke by some, but which the White House later insisted had a serious purpose because of its strategic location.
The territory has been essential to US defence since World War II.
Prime Minister Frederiksen was due to hold a press conference at 1300 GMT on Wednesday.
‘Show more respect’
The postponement has sparked strong reactions in Denmark.
“Reality transcends imagination… this man is unpredictable,” said Morten Ostergaard of the Social Liberal Party, which is part of the ruling coalition.
“For no reason, Trump assumes that (an autonomous) part of our country is for sale. Then insultingly cancels visit that everybody was preparing for,” tweeted Rasmus Jarlov, a member of the opposition Conservative Party.
“Are parts of the US for sale? Alaska? Please show more respect.”
Marc Jacobsen, a Greenland specialist at the University of Copenhagen, said Trump was acting like “an ignorant colonial overlord”.
“Trump’s idea of purchasing Greenland is absurd, and it is absurd that he is now cancelling his state visit to Denmark when he knows that there is no chance Greenland will become the 51st state of America,” he told AFP.
Meanwhile, former US ambassador to Denmark Rufus Gifford wrote on Twitter: “He asks for an invitation from a great friend and ally. The Queen obliges invites him for a state visit. He declares the visit contingent on the great friend selling part of its territory to him This. Is. Not. Normal.”
Nonetheless, conservative daily Jyllands-Posten wrote that Trump’s actions ultimately benefitted Denmark, highlighting Greenland’s geopolitical value.
“Mette Frederiksen has been given the opportunity to emphasise that Greenland’s big affairs are in fact decided in Copenhagen… strengthening Denmark’s position in this great strategic game at stake over the Arctic,” it said.
‘A large real estate deal’
The Wall Street Journal first reported that Trump had expressed interest in the self-governing part of Denmark — which is mostly covered in ice — asking advisors if it would be possible for the US to acquire the territory.
The president, a former real estate magnate, has been curious about the area’s natural resources and geopolitical relevance, the paper said.
Asked on Sunday if he would consider trading a US territory for Greenland, Trump replied that “a lot of things could be done”.
“Essentially, it’s a large real estate deal.”
Denmark colonised the 772,000 square-mile (two-million square-kilometre) island in the 18th century. It is home to around 57,000 people, most of them from the indigenous Inuit community.
Greenland’s foreign affairs ministry insisted Friday the island was ready to talk business but was not for sale.
The territory is home to the US airbase Thule, crucial during the Cold War as a first line of monitoring against a potential Russian attack.
But the melting polar ice sheet is opening up potentially major shipping routes, and untapped reserved of oil, gas and minerals will become increasingly accessible, leading Russia and China to show mounting interest in the region.
As far back as 1867, the State Department expressed interest in the island. And in 1946, President Harry S. Truman offered $100 million in gold, or parts of Alaska, in exchange for Greenland.
Danish police said Friday they had identified the eight victims killed in a train accident earlier this week, all of them Danes and ranging in age from 27 to 60.
The three men and five women were not related to each other and hail from different regions of the country, a police statement said.
The accident occurred early Wednesday when a truck trailer appeared to blow off a cargo train in strong winds and hit a passenger train travelling in the opposite direction on the Great Belt Bridge linking the islands of Zealand, where Copenhagen is located, and Funen.
Sixteen others were hurt, but none of them suffered life-threatening injuries.
The driver of the passenger train had slowed down after feeling the strong winds on the bridge, his lawyer Torben Koch told daily Berlingske.
“He was worried and slowed down to around 100-120 kilometres per hour (60-75 miles per hour), according to his own estimate, on a stretch where the speed limit is normally 180 km/h,” he said.
Investigators have yet to determine how and why the truck trailer came loose from the cargo train.
Denmark on Thursday suspended arms sales to Saudi Arabia over the murder of journalist Jamal Khashoggi, the second country to do so after Germany.
“The foreign ministry is suspending all sales of weapons and military equipment to Saudi Arabia,” Foreign Minister Anders Samuelsen said.
“I hope that the Danish decision can create additional momentum,” he added.
A foreign ministry spokesman said Copenhagen was not considering other sanctions for the moment.
On Monday, Germany decided to bar 18 Saudis from entering its territory and Europe’s Schengen passport-free zone over their alleged links to the murder.
In October, Berlin called for EU countries to follow its lead and suspend arms sales to Saudi Arabia for the time being, prompting a dismissive response from French President Emmanuel Macron.
Khashoggi, a US resident who wrote for The Washington Post and had been critical of Prince Mohammed, was lured to the Saudi consulate in Istanbul on October 2, killed and reportedly dismembered.
After lengthy denials, Saudi authorities admitted responsibility and said 21 people had been taken into custody. However, a CIA analysis leaked to the US media went further, reportedly pointing the finger at the crown prince.
Saudi Foreign Minister Adel al-Jubeir on Wednesday said criticism of Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman is a “red line”, and that calls for him to be held accountable for the grisly killing would not be tolerated.