Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau will run the country from home, after learning his wife Sophie Grégoire Trudeau has tested positive for COVID-19 amid a world-wide pandemic. The prime minister has not shown any symptoms of the virus and will not be tested for it, but will self-isolate for the next 14 days as recommended by doctors, his office said.
Grégoire Trudeau came down with mild flu-like symptoms on Wednesday night after returning from a trip to London where she spoke at a charity event at the Wembley Arena. The event was attended by 12,000 people, including former Australian Prime Minister Julia Gillard with whom Grégoire Trudeau shared a stage, as well as celebrity chef Jamie Oliver, and actor Idris Elba.
"Although I'm experiencing uncomfortable symptoms of the virus, I will be back on my feet soon. Being in quarantine at home is nothing compared to other Canadian families who might be going through this and for those facing more serious health concerns," she said in a statement tweeted by the prime minister's communications director, Cameron Ahmad. "We will get through this situation together. Please share the facts and take your health seriously."
The Trudeaus are among a number of high-ranking world leaders who have either contracted the virus or been exposed to it in the past week. Dr. Ali Akbar Velayati, the former Iranian minister and current advisor to Ayatollah Ali Khamenei has tested positive for Coronavirus and is in quarantine. France's culture minister Franck Riester has also reported testing positive.
Brazilian president Jair Bolsonaro denied testing positive for COVID-19 after his press secretary Fabio Wajngarten was diagnosed on Monday. This particular diagnosis has been a major point of stress for many after Wajngarten met with President Trump and Vice President Mike Pence at Mar-a-Lago in Florida on Saturday. President Trump will not be tested for the virus and will not self-quarantine. According to U.S. government officials, Trump and Pence do not believe they are at risk of contracting the virus at this time.
Despite the world-wide chaos and ongoing declarations of emergency, Trudeau and his wife remain hopeful and will continue to conduct business as usual. "The Prime Minister will spend the day in briefings, phone calls, and virtual meetings from home, including speaking with other world leaders and joining the special COVID-19 cabinet committee discussion," Trudeau's office said on Thursday. He is expected to address the Canadian public on Friday. There are currently 138 confirmed cases of Coronavirus in Canada.