Queen to Australia: Rise to the challenge

Queen Elizabeth has urged Australians to remain resilient in the face of the coronavirus pandemic.
Queen Elizabeth has urged Australians to remain resilient in the face of the coronavirus pandemic.

The Queen has called on Australians to "rise to the challenge" of the coronavirus pandemic, after a summer of devastating bushfires.

Elizabeth, 93, said people across the Commonwealth were experiencing a profound and rapid change to their lives, the pain of lost loved ones and an understandable concern about the future.

"Whilst it can be difficult to remain hopeful in such challenging times, especially following the summer's devastating bushfires and recent flooding, I am confident that the stoic and resilient nature of the Australian people will rise to the challenge," she said in a statement on Monday.

"I extend my sincere admiration to the many Australians who work tirelessly to help those affected, provide essential services for their fellow citizens, and continue to care for the most vulnerable."

The Queen was speaking from Windsor Castle where she is in isolation with her husband Prince Philip, 98.

Earlier, she invoked the spirit of World War II in a rare television address to the British people, telling her subjects they would overcome the coronavirus outbreak if they stayed resolute in the face of lockdown and self-isolation.

Australian Associated Press