Buckingham Palace announces HM Queen Elizabeth’s death at 96

The United Kingdom will enter a state of mourning to honour the country’s longest-serving monarch.

HM Queen Elizabeth of the United Kingdom and Head of the Commonwealth has died in Balmoral at the age of 96. Buckingham Palace announced The Queen’s death in a statement on Thursday 8 September, which has triggered tributes from leaders in the UAE, Middle East and around the world.

The Queen is a much loved and respected figure in the United Kingdom and across the globe. The Queen is known for her devotion to a life of service and her sense of duty. As the longest-serving monarch in British history, she has reigned for 70 years.

Born on 21 April 1926 as Elizabeth Alexandra Mary, it was not expected that she would become Queen. Elizabeth was third in line to the throne, as during George V’s reign the heirs included her uncle Edward VIII and her father George VI. Following Edward VIII’s abdication in 1936 and George VI’s untimely death aged 56, Elizabeth become heir to the throne.

In 1952 at the age of 25, Elizabeth became known as Queen Elizabeth II. The Queen played a key role in modernising the British monarchy, and defied her parent’s expectations by marrying Prince Philip of Greece and Denmark. The pair were married in 1947 at Westminster Abbey, and are succeeded by their four children including Prince Charles, Princess Anne, Prince Andrew and Prince Edward.

During The Queen’s reigns, her charities and patronages covered a wide range of issues, from the environment to the wildlife. Her reign has seen her travel more widely than any other monarch, and undertake many historic overseas visits.

The Queen has been an important figurehead for the UK and the Commonwealth, especially during times of social change from the Second World to the Covid-19 pandemic. She has overseen 15 Prime Ministers during her reign including Winston Churchill, Margaret Thatcher and, most recently, Liz Truss.

Over the past few months, concerns have grown over The Queen’s health. The Queen took on fewer public engagements in the last few years, and tested positive for Covid-19 in February. The Queen travelled to Balmoral Castle for her traditional summer break. It was during this period that she was put under medical supervision, and her family including Prince William remained by her side.

Following The Queen’s death, the United Kingdom is expected to go into a state of mourning and she is expected to be buried at King George VI Memorial Chapel in Windsor. Following a meeting with the Accession Council at St James’ Palace, Prince Charles will be proclaimed the new sovereign.

FACT will keep you up to date as tributes pour in for HM The Queen.

GO: Follow @theroyalfamily for more information.

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