Britain’s Queen Elizabeth celebrates 91st birthday

Britain’s Queen Elizabeth II reacts as she meets residents during her tour of Priory View, an independent living scheme for older residents, in Dunstable, north-west of London. Britain’s Queen Elizabeth II celebrates her 91st birthday on April 21, 2017, with the world’s longest-reigning monarch taking a step back from royal duties to allow the younger generation to step forward. (AFP/POOL/ PETER NICHOLLS)
Updated 21 April 2017
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Britain’s Queen Elizabeth celebrates 91st birthday

LONDON: Britain’s Queen Elizabeth, the world’s oldest and longest-reigning monarch, celebrated her 91st birthday in a usual low-key fashion on Friday.
Artillery gun salutes in London’s Hyde Park and at the Tower of London will mark the occasion although the queen, who normally spends her birthday privately, has no formal engagements planned herself.
Elizabeth was born on April 21, 1926 in Bruton Street in central London when Calvin Coolidge was US President and Joseph Stalin had just taken control in the Soviet Union and became queen in 1952 at 25.
Despite her age, she still regularly carries out official duties although she has cut back on the number of engagements in recent years, passing these onto other members of the Windsor family such as to her son and heir Prince Charles and grandsons, Princes William and Harry.
Polls show she remains very popular among Britons and royal aides say there is little prospect of her abdicating. Asked if she was well during a trip to Northern Ireland last year, she quipped “Well, I’m still alive.”
The queen has an official birthday in June which is publicly marked with a large parade of soldiers through central London, known as Trooping the Color.


Spanish warship ordered ships to leave British waters near Gibraltar

Updated 23 min 2 sec ago
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Spanish warship ordered ships to leave British waters near Gibraltar

  • The British ships did not respond to the orders and stayed in position

LONDON: A Spanish warship tried to order commercial shipping to leave anchorages in British waters near Gibraltar but was challenged by the British navy and sailed away, Gibraltar said.
The Spanish ship tried to order ships to leave their anchorages on the eastern side of the Rock but the ships stayed in position.
The British navy challenged the Spanish warship which then sailed slowly along the coast with its weapons uncovered and manned, Gibraltar said.
"There is only nuisance value to these foolish games being played by those who don't accept unimpeachable British sovereignty over the waters around Gibraltar," a spokesman for Gibraltar said.