Queen sends 'severe sympathies' to Australia flood victims
Queen Elizabeth II sent her "severe sympathies" Friday to the hundreds of thousands affected by Australian floods, which have inundated towns in the northeast.
The 84-year-old monarch, who is Australia's head of state, sent the message to Queensland Governor Penelope Wensley, her representative in the state stricken by the crisis.
"I have been following with great concern over the last few days the news of the devastating floods in Queensland," the sovereign said.
"Please extend my sincere sympathies to all the people whose communities and livelihoods have been so badly damaged in this disaster."
Australia started forced evacuations of the major town of Rockhampton on Friday as floods that have already affected 200,000 people swamped more communities.
© 2010 AFP