King Charles to return to public-facing duties following positive response to cancer treatment

The King is to return to public-facing royal duties, with his medical team "very encouraged" by the progress made in his cancer treatment.

The monarch has been receiving outpatient care since early February and despite the good news, palace sources stressed His Majesty is still continuing treatment.

The announcement that the King is doing well will be a morale boost for the family, with both him and the Princess of Wales being diagnosed with cancer.

A Buckingham Palace spokesperson said: "His Majesty's medical team are very encouraged by the progress made so far and remain positive about the King's continued recovery."

They added: "His Majesty's treatment programme 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."

The palace also released a new photograph of the King and Queen, taken in Buckingham Palace on 10 April, the day after their 19th wedding anniversary.

To mark his full return, Buckingham Palace said the royal couple will visit a cancer treatment centre on Tuesday.

"This visit will be the first in a number of external engagements His Majesty will undertake in the weeks ahead," the palace said.

"In addition, The King and Queen will host Their Majesties The Emperor and Empress of Japan for a state visit in June."

The King and Queen are to celebrate the first anniversary of their coronation on 6 May.

The palace said: "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."

The prime minister has welcomed the news, posting on X: "Brilliant news to end the week!"

The monarch has, by all accounts, been keen to get back to work and has recently been seen greeting members of the public at Easter and meeting the governor of the Bank of England to unveil new banknotes.

Sky News royal commentator Alastair Bruce said: "I think with all the guidance that the doctors have given, the King has been able to make this announcement now, and it means that the palace can start to make a proper plan for the King's events for the summer and allow him to really put his back into his role.

"Hopefully that steady progress will continue.

"The important point is the palace can draw him back from certain events and maybe alter how they will carry them out.

"The King is looking forward to this and especially the arrival of the Emperor and Empress of Japan later in the year, which is key business for Britain.

"I think he will be much cheered by being given this partial go-ahead."

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Consultant oncologist Dr Karol Sikora told Sky News his return to public duties "is very good news".

"The recommendation that he at least resumes partial duties is excellent. It means that the cancer is under control," he said.

"The type of cancer and the treatment he's had has not been disclosed. That doesn't matter. He's going back to work which means things are going in the right direction.

"I think the outcome will be great."

The King's diary will not be a full summer programme, and attendance will be announced nearer the time and "subject to doctors' advice", with "adaptations made where necessary to minimise risks".

The warmer weather in the approach to summer will allow events to be held outside and minimise the risk posed by other people that many cancer patients face.

The spokesperson added: "The pacing of the King's programme will be carefully calibrated as his recovery continues, in close consultation with his medical team."