Queen Elizabeth II, Britain’s longest-reigning monarch and the nation’s figurehead for seven decades, has died aged 96, Buckingham Palace said on Thursday.
The family rushed to be by her side at her Scottish home, Balmoral Castle, after doctors expressed concern about her health.
She had been suffering from what Buckingham Palace has called “episodic mobility problems” since the end of last year, forcing her to withdraw from nearly all her public engagements.
Queen Elizabeth II, who was also the world’s oldest and longest-serving head of state, came to the throne following the death of her father King George VI on Feb. 6, 1952, when she was just 25.
Buckingham Palace said in a statement released Thursday “The Queen died peacefully at Balmoral this afternoon,”
The statement added that, “The King and The Queen Consort will remain at Balmoral this evening and will return to London tomorrow.”
Queen Elizabeth’s eldest son Charles, 73, automatically becomes king of the United Kingdom and the head of state of 14 other territories including Australia, Canada and New Zealand.
All of the Queen’s children are now at Balmoral after a flight carrying the Duke of Cambridge, the Duke of York and the Earl and Countess of Wessex landed at Aberdeen Airport just before 4pm.
The Duke of Cambridge and the Duke of York landed in Scotland, joining senior members of the Royal family at Balmoral where the Queen was under medical supervision following doctors’ concerns.
The Duke of Sussex, who has been staying at Frogmore Cottage in Windsor during a brief European tour, “will be travelling to Scotland”, a source confirmed. Initially a spokesman said the Duchess of Sussex would be joining him, but she is now staying in London.
Ghana’s President Nana Akufo-Addo has extended his “deepest condolences” to the Royal Family over the death of Queen Elizabeth II.
The President in a tweet to sympathize with the Royal Family celebrated the Queen for her great impact as the Head of the Commonwealth of Nations.
Joe Bright Nyarko
Journalist/Communication Researcher. Environment & Sustainability Advocate. Managing Editor of aptnewsghana.com, a non-profit news portal with bias towards environment and sustainability issues, rural development policies and gender & inequality.