No, the Queen isn't dead - here's how the BBC tweeted a false death report

The BBC sparked a national panic after one of its reporters tweeted news that Queen Elizabeth II had died.

A tweet sent from Ahmen Khawaja’s account claimed the Queen had died. Within seconds, the reporter's message was being shared by global media outlets such as CNN and Bild, adding fuel to the flames.

Khawaja has since deleted the tweets, putting it down to a “silly prank” while her phone was unattended.

A Buckingham Palace spokesperson said the Queen had visited King Edward VII's Hospital “very briefly” but was not suffering from any illness.

A BBC spokesperson added: “During a technical rehearsal for an obituary, tweets were mistakenly sent from the account of a BBC journalist saying that a member of the royal family had been taken ill.

"The tweets were swiftly deleted and we apologise for any offence.”

The statement clashes with Khawaja’s claims that the tweet was a prank.

Join us, it's free.

Become a member to get access to:

  • Exclusive Content
  • Daily and specialised newsletters
  • Research and analysis

Join us, it’s free.

Want to read this article and others just like it? All you need to do is become a member of The Drum. Basic membership is quick, free and you will be able to receive daily news updates.