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Queen Elizabeth II has died at age 96.
Buckingham Palace announced the news on Thursday evening.
On Thursday morning, Britons woke up to the news that doctors of the long-reigning monarch were “concerned for Her Majesty’s health” and that they recommended she stay under medical supervision.
“The Queen remains comfortable” at Balmoral Castle, the palace added. Her death comes just weeks after she celebrated her platinum jubilee.
“The whole country will be deeply concerned by the news from Buckingham Palace this lunchtime,” Liz Truss, the new prime minister of the United Kingdom, tweeted early Thursday. “My thoughts – and the thoughts of people across our United Kingdom – are with Her Majesty The Queen and her family at this time.”
Prince Charles, Prince Andrew, Princess Anne, Prince Edward and Prince William are reported to have been at Balmoral Castle at the time of her passing. Prince Harry is on his way to be by his family’s side.
In London, crowds gathered outside Buckingham Palace, singing the UK’s national anthem, “God Save the Queen.”
Over the past year, the Queen battled bouts of mobility issues, taking to using a cane in October 2021.
For most, the Queen has been the only living monarch they have known. In 2015, she officially became England’s longest reigning British monarch–exceeding her great-great-grandmother Queen Victoria’s reign. Queen Elizabeth sat on the throne for 70 years and held the record for the second-longest reigning monarch in the world. Her reign is second only to French King Louis XIV, who ruled for 72 years.
She is survived by four children, eight grandchildren and 12 great-grandchildren.