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Royal Birthday

Swedish king turns 65 - more calls for his retirement

Published lördag 30 april 2011 kl 14.16
Carl XVI Gustaf meeting the public on the castle courtyard. Photo: Bertil Ericson

The Swedish king Carl Gustaf reached retirement age on Saturday - but he is far from retiring. "It goes with the job that the monarch carries on as long as he is in full possession of his senses," he told news agency TT ahead of his 65-th birthday.

The public celebrations of the king's birthday started with a bit of a hitch at the Royal Palace in Stockholm, when the speaker, while announcing the programme to the audience, persistently called him "Her Majesty the King".

The mistake came as Swedish Television news published an opinion poll, which shows that the king's popularity is sinking. 39 % of those polled want Carl Gustaf to retire - in favour of his daughter Crown Princess Victoria. That can be compared to 32 % a year ago. 45% would like him to continue as long as he wants and is able to, which is down from 64% in February last year.

The poll results is seen as an effect of the book "The Reluctant Monarch" published last year, which among others includes reports of infidelity, visits to private night clubs and scantily-clad women who were brought in just for his amusement.

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