Most Swedes want king to step down: Poll

Stockholm: Nearly two-thirds of Swedes would like to see King Carl XVI Gustaf abdicate and hand the throne over to his daughter Princess Victoria, according to a new poll published on Saturday.

Sixty-three percent of those surveyed by the Aftonbladet newspaper said they would like to see the king make way for the 33-year-old princess within the next 10 years. Only 30 percent said he should reign until his death, while the remaining seven percent did not offer an opinion.

Fifteen percent of the 1,000 respondents said the king should step down as soon as possible, 27 percent said he should go within the next five years and 21 percent within the next decade.

The poll comes after the recent publication of a tell-biography of the king which included details of his affairs with a string of younger women, including Camilla Henemark, the lead singer with the Army of Lovers pop group.

The 64-year-old king acceded to the throne in 1973 when he was just 27.

Other members of the Swedish royal family have also found themselves the target of lurid tabloid reporting in recent months, including Prince Carl Philip who has been romantically linked to a reality TV star.

Princess Madeleine, the younger daughter of King Carl and Queen Silvia, broke off her engagement with her long-time boyfriend in April after it emerged that her fiancee had had an affair with a Norwegian woman.

Her older sister Victoria, who married her former fitness instructor in the summer, is the most popular member of the royal family, according to the poll.

While 56 percent said she was their favourite royal, only eight percent nominated Carl Gustaf.

The monarchy as an institution however remains popular with 74 percent of those surveyed supporting its continuation.

Bureau Report

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