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Palace gives major update on King’s cancer battle

King Charles and Camilla say they have received kindness from around the world.

King Charles and Camilla say they have received kindness from around the world.

King Charles will return to public duties next week as he makes encouraging progress with his cancer treatment and recuperation, Buckingham Palace has announced.

Almost three months after stepping back, doctors were “sufficiently pleased” with the monarch’s health to allow him to resume some public-facing engagements.

However, 75-year-old Charles will still be continuing his medical regime under the supervision of his doctors.

The announcement was made on Saturday morning (AEDT), with a new photograph of Charles and Camilla released to mark the health milestone.

The King’s first job back will be a symbolic visit to a cancer treatment centre on Tuesday. In June, the royal couple will host the Emperor and Empress of Japan for a state visit.

The news comes as the first anniversary of Charles’s Coronation approaches on May 6.

“Their Majesties remain deeply grateful for the many kindnesses and good wishes they have received from around the world throughout the joys and challenges of the past year,” said a statement from The Royal Family posted to X.

In February, the palace revealed the King had been diagnosed with an unspecified form of cancer detected in tests after a corrective procedure for an enlarged prostate.

Although Charles continued with official state business, the diagnosis led him to postpone public engagements to begin treatment and rest.

While it was too early to say how much longer his cancer treatment would last, the representative said his doctors were “very encouraged by the progress made so far and remain positive about the King’s continued recovery”.

No further details about his condition or his treatment were given, in line with the usual stance on medical privacy.

“His Majesty The King will shortly return to public-facing duties after a period of treatment and recuperation following his recent cancer diagnosis,” said the statement on Saturday morning (AEDT).

“His majesty’s treatment program will continue but doctors are sufficiently pleased with the progress made so far that the King is now able to resume a number of public-facing duties,” a Buckingham Palace representative said.

“His majesty is greatly encouraged to be resuming some public-facing duties and very grateful to his medical team for their continued care and expertise.”

The King has been pictured and filmed carrying out some official duties in private, but his only public appearance was last month when he greeted well-wishers in an impromptu walkabout after an Easter church service in Windsor.

The King’s and Queen’s first public engagement will involve a visit to a cancer treatment centre next Tuesday, where they will meet medical specialists and patients.

“This visit will be the first in a number of external engagements His Majesty will undertake in the weeks ahead,” said Buckingham Palace.

“In addition, The King and Queen will host Their Majesties The Emperor and Empress of Japan for a State Visit in June, at the request of HM Government.”

However, Charles will not carry out his usual summer program and his plans will be crafted in consultation with his medical team to minimise risks to recovery, the palace said.

United Kingdom Prime Minister Rishi Sunak responded to the news of the King’s return to public duties, saying on social media site X: “Brilliant news to end the week!”

The King’s absence has coincided with news that his daughter-in-law Kate, wife of his son and heir Prince William, was undergoing preventative chemotherapy after tests following major abdominal surgery revealed cancer had been present.

The Princess of Wales, often known by her maiden name Kate Middleton, will herself only return to public duties when her medical team say she is well enough to do so.

Charles’ health scare came less than 18 months into his reign after he succeeded from his mother, the late Queen Elizabeth, and less than a year since his coronation, the UK’s biggest ceremonial event for seven decades.

-with AAP

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