Amidst growing concerns surrounding the coronavirus across the world, Queen Elizabeth II will give a rare, televised address about the crisis on Sunday. According to Buzzfeed News, Buckingham Palace announced that the monarch's address, which has already been recorded, will be broadcast to the United Kingdom and the Commonwealth at 8 p.m. BST (3 p.m. ET). The special will air on most television channels, on the radio, and even on the royal family's various social media accounts.
Chris Ship, a royal correspondent for ITV News, reported that this will mark only the fourth time in the queen's 68-year reign that she has addressed the nation like this. He reported that the three other instances were in 1991 for the Gulf War, 1997 following the death of Princess Diana and 2002 for the Queen Mother's funeral. Buzzfeed News reported that Queen Elizabeth's address comes as the number of confirmed cases in the United Kingdom has jumped to 38,168 with 3,605 deaths (as of Friday). The queen previously addressed the world in a lengthy message she posted on the royal family's official social media channels.
In her message, the queen related that she and her husband, Prince Philip, were at Windsor Castle and that they were thinking about everyone around the world who is currently dealing with this pandemic.
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"We are all being advised to change our normal routines and regular patterns of life for the greater good of the communities we live in and, in particular, to protect the most vulnerable within them," the queen's message read. "At times such as these, I am reminded that our nation’s history has been forged by people and communities coming together to work as one, concentrating our combined efforts with a focus on the common goal."
"We are enormously thankful for the expertise and commitment of our scientists, medical practitioners and emergency and public services; but now more than any time in our recent past, we all have a vitally important part to play as individuals - today and in the coming days, weeks and months," the statement continued. "Many of us will need to find new ways of staying in touch with each other and making sure that loved ones are safe. I am certain we are up to that challenge. You can be assured that my family and I stand ready to play our part."
This news of Queen Elizabeth's upcoming address also comes as the queen's eldest son and the heir to the British throne, Prince Charles has been battling the coronavirus. On Wednesday morning, the prince announced that he was "on the other side" of the illness, per USA Today.