Emmanuel Macron tests positive for Covid-19 and is self-isolating
- The 42-year-old took a test ‘as soon as first symptoms appeared,’ his office said
- Macron will isolate for seven days but plans to continue running the country
- President has been centre stage in Brexit negotiations between UK and EU
- Only yesterday he embraced the PM of Portugal, 59, at the Elysee Palace
The 42-year-old took a test ‘as soon as the first symptoms appeared,’ the Elysee Palace said in a brief statement.
Mr Macron will isolate for seven days but plans to continue running the country via video conference.
Frantic contact tracing is now afoot as the president has been centre stage in Brexit negotiations and only yesterday embraced the Prime Minister of Portugal in Paris.
It is not clear whether his 67-year-old wife Brigitte is staying at the Elysee Palace at this time or how Mr Macron proposes to isolate from her.
French President Emmanuel Macron, 42, meeting Portuguese Prime Minister Antonio Costa on Wednesday
French President Emmanuel Macron with Prime Minister Of Portugal Antonio Costa, 59, at the Elysee Palace on Wednesday
Macron shakes hands and holds 70-year-old Angel Gurria, the Secretary General of the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development, on Monday at the palace
The French president is one of several heads of state and government around the world who have contracted Covid-19, including British Prime Minister Boris Johnson and US President Donald Trump.
France earlier this week eased restrictions imposed to battle the second wave of the coronavirus but infection rates remain high.
There is still a nationwide overnight curfew from 8 pm to halt the spread of the virus while restaurants and cafes as well as theatres and cinemas remain closed.
Over 59,300 people have died in France of coronavirus since the start of the pandemic, according to official figures.
The recording of over 17,000 new cases on Wednesday alone has also generated concern as people shop and travel more intensely ahead of the Christmas holidays.
Like other EU states, France is pinning its hopes on a vaccine to quell the virus and Prime Minister Jean Castex said Wednesday the country will receive around 1.16 million Covid-19 vaccine doses by year end.
French President Emmanuel Macron pats Spanish Prime Minister Pedro Sanchez on the back as he arrives for work at the palace on Monday
Macron, without a mask, bumps elbows with the OECD’s 70-year-old Secretary General Angel Gurria on Monday
World leaders who caught Covid
The US president, who famously referred to the virus as a hoax, caught the disease at the height of the presidential campaign in October.
The 74-year-old was admitted to hospital but made a rapid recovery to get back out on the campaign trail.
The 65-year-old Brazilian president had played down the seriousness of the virus, calling it a ‘little flu, but caught the disease in July.
During his quarantine, Mr Bolsonaro said: ‘I knew I was going to catch it someday, as I think unfortunately nearly everyone here is going to catch it eventually. What are you afraid of? Face up to it.’
The British Prime Minister, 56, was among world leaders the worst afflicted by coronavirus.
Mr Johnson was rushed to intensive care in April at the height of the pandemic in Europe.
Such was the severity of his illness that preparations were made should he die.
Prince Albert II of Monaco
The 62-year-old head of state caught coronavirus in March and medics gave him the all clear at the start of April.
The Russian Prime Minister caught the virus in April. Mishustin, 54, was forced to hand powers over to his colleagues while recovering from the disease.