In a rare televised address, The Head of the Commonwealth, Queen Elizabeth II, has said “we will succeed” in the fight against the coronavirus.
She said: “While we have faced challenges before, this one is different. This time we join with all nations across the globe in a common endeavour, using the great advances of science and our instinctive compassion to heal. We will succeed - and that success will belong to every one of us.
“Across the Commonwealth and around the world, we have seen heart-warming stories of people coming together to help others, be it through delivering food parcels and medicines, checking on neighbours, or converting businesses to help the relief effort.”
In what is described as an “ambitious message to inspire”, she said: “I hope in the years to come everyone will be able to take pride in how they responded to this challenge.”
She urged Commonwealth citizens to deal with the pandemic with self-discipline and resolve, saying: “Better days will return.”
In her very personal message, she also thanked frontline doctors and nurses, care workers and those carrying out essential roles.
Commonwealth Secretary-General Patricia Scotland described The Queen’s message as an “anchor in increasingly turbulent times”.
She said: “The Queen has dedicated her life to tireless service to the Commonwealth through the ever-enduring values that she represents and promotes through the pages of our history.
“Her address unites our 2.4 billion citizens to stand together in solidarity and strength as one family under one identity and encourages the 54 member countries to deliver a coordinated response to achieve one common goal of ending this pandemic everywhere.”
COVID-19, a disease caused by a novel coronavirus, is spreading across the Commonwealth at an alarming rate. As of 4 April 2020, there are about 60,000 confirmed cases and more than 4,000 deaths within the Commonwealth.
The Secretary-General said: “The window of opportunity is still open for Commonwealth countries, the choices our leaders and our citizens make today will have a significant impact on how soon life can return to normal.”