The royal family has sent support to victims of the bushfires which have ravaged Australia.
Prince Harry, 35, and Meghan Markle, 38, said their “thoughts and prayers” are with those caught up in the natural disaster, which has so far claimed the lives of 24 people and half a million animals, and has destroyed 13 million acres of land.
The Duke and Duchess of Sussex - who visited the country during a royal tour in 2018 - shared a photo of a koala being rescued by a firefighter on Instagram as they encouraged social media users to “lend your support” to a series of organisations tackling the blaze.
Captioning a carousel, which also featured two further images showing the devastation, they wrote: “Our thoughts and prayers are with those across Australia who are continuing to face the devastating fires that have been raging for months.”
They were joined by Prince William, 37, and Kate Middleton, 37, who revealed on their own Instagram account that they were “saddened” by events in Australia - which they also visited on a royal tour in 2014.
Alongside an image of a kangaroo escaping from a blaze engulfing a property, they wrote: “We continue to be shocked and deeply saddened to hear about the fires that are destroying homes, livelihoods and wildlife across much of Australia.
”Our thoughts and prayers are with all the people and communities who are affected by this devastating event.
”We send our deepest condolences to the families and friends of those who have tragically lost their lives, and the brave firefighters who continue to risk their own lives to save the lives of others.”
Similarly, a letter addressed by the Queen to the Governor General of Australia, Governor of New South Wales, Governor of Queensland, the Governor of Victoria and to all Australians was posted on the Instagram account run on behalf of the monarch and the Duke of Edinburgh.
Her Majesty, 93, wrote: “I have been deeply saddened to hear of the continued bushfires and their devastating impact across many parts of Australia.
“My thanks go out to the emergency services, and those who put their own lives in danger to help communities in need.
“Prince Philip and I send our thoughts and prayers to all Australians at this difficult time.”
Fires have been active in Australia since September, and they have become the worst the country has seen in decades.
According to CNN, the devastation has hit all states, but New South Wales has been most affected.
It has also been reported by the New York Times this week that away from the fires millions of Australians are choking on hazardous levels of smoke.