The King and Queen of the Netherlands have been forced to issue a public apology while on a family holiday in Greece.
King Willem-Alexander and Queen Maxima were staying on the island of Milos when they were photographed standing close to a staff member at a restaurant, failing to observe the appropriate amount of social distance.
During the coronavirus crisis, people who don’t live together are advised to keep a distance of at least one metre from others to help stop the spread of COVID-19.
After the photo was shared online, the couple faced huge backlash. They have since apologised in a Tweet posted on August 24.
“A photo appeared in the media in which we didn’t keep enough social distance. In the spontaneity of the moment, we didn’t pay enough attention to that. Of course, we should have,” the message read.
“Compliance with coronavirus rules is essential on holiday as well to get the virus under control.”
The tweet is signed “WA & Maxima”.
They aren’t the first royal couple to breach coronavirus protocols, with Crown Princess Mary of Denmark similarly issuing an apology after she shook the hands of one of her hosts at a recent appearance.
Mary, 48, was visiting the Grenaa sea aquarium on Wednesday, her first official engagement since the northern European summer holidays and her first since the peak of the coronavirus pandemic.
While greeting one of the hosts at the aquarium, she completely forgot about coronavirus protocols and shook hands with the man.
The apology, which was written in Danish, reads: “On land, at sea and in the air — we have to get used to wearing a mask. It is important that we all follow the health authorities’ recommendations together.”