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King Charles III’s cancer diagnosis puts spotlight on Prince William’s role in monarchy


Following a cancer diagnosis, King Charles III will temporarily step back from his public responsibilities, leading to increased attention on Prince William, who is next in line for the throne. As Charles focuses on his recovery, the spotlight naturally shifts to William, his eldest son and the future king.
Prince William has also been away from his royal duties, aiding Kate Middleton during her recovery from abdominal surgery.He is, however, expected to resume his royal engagements soon. Despite King Charles’s health concerns, there is no immediate need for Prince William to assume the role of monarch, as Charles continues to manage certain state responsibilities.
Prince William’s children, Prince George, Princess Charlotte, and Prince Louis, are second, third, and fourth in line for the throne, respectively. Despite stepping back from his royal duties, William’s younger brother, Prince Harry, remains fifth in line, followed by his children. Prince Andrew, Charles’s brother, is eighth in line.
A statement from Buckingham Palace said that King Charles has begun a series of regular treatments and he has been advised by doctors to postpone public duties, although he would continue to “undertake state business and official paperwork as usual”, the palace added. This means that Charles will still fulfill his essential duties, such as endorsing Acts of Parliament, which are part of his constitutional role.
The palace refrained from specifying the type of cancer afflicting King Charles, clarifying only that it is unrelated to his prior benign prostate procedure.
The palace revealed that “a separate issue of concern was noted” during the monarch’s recent hospitalization for an enlarged prostate, a stay that lasted three nights in a London medical facility. “Diagnostic tests have identified a form of cancer,” the official statement confirmed.
The statement further detailed, “His Majesty has today commenced a schedule of regular treatments, during which time he has been advised by doctors to postpone public-facing duties.” It assured that “Throughout this period, His Majesty will continue to undertake State business and official paperwork as usual.”
King Charles is receiving his medical care on an outpatient basis, as noted by the palace.
Highlighting the king’s typically robust health, the palace conveyed his optimistic outlook, stating Charles “remains wholly positive about his treatment and looks forward to returning to full public duty as soon as possible.”
Charles ascended to the throne immediately after the passing of his mother, Queen Elizabeth II, in September 2022, marking the end of her 70-year reign. His coronation took place in May 2023. Having held the title of Prince of Wales for the longest duration, a title given to the eldest son of the reigning monarch, Charles passed this title to William upon becoming king.
Despite his health challenges, King Charles is reported to be in high spirits, as per the Buckingham Palace statement. The king expressed his gratitude towards his medical team for their prompt action, made possible by his recent hospital stay. He remains optimistic about his treatment and is eager to resume his full range of public duties at the earliest. The decision to disclose his diagnosis was made to curb speculation and to foster awareness among those affected by cancer worldwide.
Kate is anticipated to remain absent from her official duties until after Easter.
(With inputs from agencies)

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