14:15 GMT28 September 2020
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    This is the first Easter message from Queen Elizabeth II, who, focusing on the current pandemic, said that the "coronavirus will not overcome us" and urged Brits and citizens of the Commonwealth to "keep each other safe" by keeping apart. The COVID-19 death toll in the UK has recently topped 9,800.

    The UK Queen has for the first time released an Easter message to the nation stressing that this year Easter will be different, but will not be "cancelled" amid the coronavirus pandemic as "we need Easter as much as ever". 

    "As dark as death can be - particularly for those suffering with grief - light and life are greater", the Queen said, appealing to a tradition of lighting candles to celebrate the religious holiday in the country. 

    ​She described the ritual of lighting candles and passing them to each other as an action that "speaks to every culture" and "unites" people from every corner of the world. Despite the fact that the coronavirus pandemic has changed the way Easter will be celebrated, "by keeping apart we keep each other safe", the Queen said. 

    This comes as Easter gatherings around the world are planning to take place virtually, with video and streaming technology, as physical gatherings have been cancelled to practice social distancing amid the deadly COVID-19 outbreak.

    According to Johns Hopkins University Resource Centre data, the number of confirmed cases in the United Kingdom has eclipsed 79,000 and taken over 9,800 lives.

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    Tags:
    Easter, Queen Elizabeth, UK, COVID-19
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