FBI files reveal alleged plot to assassinate Queen Elizabeth II in California

Washington DC - A newly released cache of FBI files has revealed a potential plot to assassinate Queen Elizabeth II during a royal visit to California in 1983.

A newly released cache of FBI files has revealed a potential plot to assassinate Queen Elizabeth II (2nd from r.) during a royal visit to California in 1983.
A newly released cache of FBI files has revealed a potential plot to assassinate Queen Elizabeth II (2nd from r.) during a royal visit to California in 1983.  © IMAGO / ZUMA Wire

The possible threat followed a phone call made by "a man who claimed that his daughter had been killed in Northern Ireland by a rubber bullet," according to the document that also refers to a bar frequented by Irish Republican Army (IRA) sympathizers.

The queen and her husband Prince Philip visited the West Coast in February and March 1983, and the trip passed off without incident.

Four years earlier in 1979, IRA paramilitaries opposed to British rule in Northern Ireland killed Louis Mountbatten, the last colonial governor of India and an uncle of Philip, in a bomb attack.

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The file states that the man claimed he was going to attempt to harm the queen "either by dropping some object off the Golden Gate Bridge onto the royal yacht Britannia when it sails underneath."

Alternatively he "would attempt to kill Queen Elizabeth when she visited Yosemite National Park", they added.

Several attempts made on Queen Elizabeth II's life

Queen Elizabeth the II died in September 2022, at the age of 96.
Queen Elizabeth the II died in September 2022, at the age of 96.  © JUSTIN TALLIS / AFP

A separate file among the documents, dated 1989, pointed out that while the FBI was unaware of any specific threats against the queen, it thought that "the possibility of threats against the British monarchy is ever present from the Irish Republican Army".

The queen, who died last September aged 96, has previously been reported to have been the target of other assassination plots.

There was an unsuccessful attempted to derail her train west of Sydney in 1970, while 11 years later, the IRA tried to bomb her on a visit to Shetland, off the northeast coast of Scotland.

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In the same year, a mentally disturbed teenager fired a single shot towards the queen's car during a visit to New Zealand.

Another teenager fired six blanks at her during a parade in central London, and on Christmas Day 2021, a man entered the Windsor Palace grounds with a crossbow, intending to kill her.

Cover photo: IMAGO / ZUMA Wire

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