King Carl XVI Gustaf called on the people of Sweden to limit visiting relatives during the Easter season to prevent Covid-19 from spreading.

"Holidays are the occasion when we like to travel or spend time with family and friends. Many people like to go to church," King Carl XVI Gustaf told television on April 5.


King Carl XVI Gustaf in a newsletter urging people to stay home on April 5 Photo: SVT.

"But at Easter this year, something was not possible. We had to accept. We had to think twice, get ready at home," he said.

The 74-year-old king, along with Queen Silvia, 75, are considered to be at high risk to nCoV due to age. The two men isolated themselves in a royal castle north of Stockholm.

Sweden on April 5 said 352 of the 401 Covid-19 deaths in the country were people aged over 70. Nearly one third of new nCoV infections in Sweden have been reported in nursing homes.

The country reported 6,830 cases of nCoV as of April 5, a sharp increase from 3,700 cases and 110 deaths a week ago. The actual number is likely to be higher, since only hospitalized patients and medical staff in Sweden can be tested.

In contrast to neighboring countries of Northern Europe and much of Europe, Sweden does not apply travel restrictions to prevent nCoV, still allowing schools, restaurants, cafes to open and gather crowds in parks, even though people are advised to isolate the community and isolate themselves if symptoms are found.

The percentage of people infected with nCoV in Sweden is 36 per million, higher than the rate of 29 in Denmark and 9 in Norway, two neighboring countries that have introduced more stringent restrictions.

Prime Minister Stefan Lofven has called on people to voluntarily raise awareness about avoiding nCoV, warning thousands of people in Sweden to die from nCoV and the crisis could last for months instead of weeks. Critics, meanwhile, called on the government to implement a more stringent Covid-19 prevention measure, amid growing concerns about its anti-epidemic policy.