The royal court has confirmed that Crown Princess Victoria of Sweden's annual public name day celebrations have been cancelled, in light of the coronavirus outbreak. In a statement, the Swedish court explained that the event, which is open to the public, would not take place this year. It said the decision was taken based on the advice of the Public Health Authority.
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The ceremony was due to take place on Thursday 12 March in the Inner Courtyard of Stockholm's Royal Palace. Thousands of wellwishers gather each year to watch the military parade but the Swedish court did not want to take the risk, given the number of confirmed cases of the virus in the country.
The name day celebrations took place in private this year
Many names are associated with certain dates in Sweden and Crown Princess Victoria's name day has been celebrated on 12 March since the 1990s. The princess' birthday on 14 July is also marked with a big party, when the Swedish royal family traditionally spends their summer break on the island of Öland. The heir to the Swedish throne is usually joined by her husband Crown Prince Daniel and her children Princess Estelle, eight, and Prince Oscar, four, for the annual celebrations.
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The crown princess with her family on her name day last year
Last week, Crown Princess Victoria's parents King Carl XVI Gustaf and Queen Silvia cancelled a dinner reception at the royal palace in Stockholm, where around 150 guests were expected to attend.
A statement from the Swedish royal court said: "In recent days, a number of cases of infection from the novel coronavirus have been detected in Sweden. The Public Health Authority considers the risk of detecting cases of covid-19 in Sweden to be high, but the risk of the infection spreading is considered low. Awaiting further development of events, Their Majesties, as hosts, choose to postpone the Official Dinner that was planned to be held at the Royal Palace on Wednesday, 4 March. This is done out of consideration for the invited guests."
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