PARIS (Reuters) - Princess Charlene of Monaco, who had been away from the principality for months, with the palace saying she needed to treat health issues including a "profound general fatigue," told local media she was better but her health was still fragile.
The 44-year-old former Olympics champion, who married Prince Albert in 2011, returned to Monaco in March as her health improved, the royal palace said at the time. She only recently resumed official duties.
"My health is still fragile and I don't want to rush things," she told newspaper in a rare interview, published on Wednesday, adding: "It's been a long, difficult, painful path. Today, I feel more serene."
Her long absence fuelled media speculation of a rift between Charlene and Albert, which the palace repeatedly denied.
Charlene criticised the speculation, praising her husband for supporting her and saying that "like all human beings we have emotions, fragilities, but our family is exposed to media attention and the slightest weakness is relayed."
Albert is the son of the late Prince Rainier III and actress Grace Kelly, who gave up a Hollywood career to become Princess Grace.
Charlene swam for South Africa at the 2000 Olympic Games in Sydney.
They got married in a lavish ceremony in the principality, a playground of the rich known for its Grand Prix car race and 19th century casino.
"I'm very happy to be back home in Monaco," Charlene told Nice Matin.
(Writing by Ingrid Melander; Editing by Toby Chopra)