Queen Elizabeth II was on a secret mission on Tuesday morning. The 93-year-old monarch made a surprise visit to the MI5 headquarters of secret intelligence agency situated in Central London.

The queen's surprise visit came with the intention of expressing gratitude for their tireless efforts to keeping the country safe. According to People, during her visit, Queen Elizabeth II met with MI5 director Sir Andrew Parker, who gave her a personal tour of the domestic spy facility.

It is said that the queen's visit was intentionally kept discreet in order to avoid cameras and reporters and maintain the decorum of the security agency. Apart from interacting with the officers, the queen also viewed a number of exhibits and took a tour of the agency's private museum.

"I would like to take my visit here today as an opportunity to thank you all," the monarch said. "I am always struck by the remarkable resolve with which you carry out your vital role."

"You have always demonstrated the utmost commitment to your motto - 'Regnum Defende' ['Defend the Realm']. Because of the nature of your work, it is without public recognition. So, it is on behalf of the country that I say to you all: thank you," she added.

Short for Military Intelligence, Section 5, MI5 is the UK's domestic counterintelligence and security agency. It is also part of its intelligence machinery alongside the Secret Intelligence Service (MI6), Government Communications Headquarters (GCHQ) and Defence Intelligence (DI). The agency was formed in the year 1909 as the Secret Service Bureau and comes under the authority of the Home Secretary.

‘I am always struck by the remarkable resolve with which you carry out your vital role.’

🎥 Watch The Queen’s MI5 speech in full. pic.twitter.com/cDY56dtj4R

— The Royal Family (@RoyalFamily) February 25, 2020

The queen went on to say that in spite of continuous threats and challenges, the agency continues to impress her by the way they have "adapted to the changing threats to our nation."

Grenfell Tower fire the Queen
The Queen visits the scene of the Grenfell Tower fire in west London Dan Kitwood/Getty Images

This happens to be one of the few first visits for the queen after her grandson Prince Harry and his wife Meghan Markle split from the royal family. The MI5 visit comes at a time of family crisis when the entire family is still reeling from the Megxit shock. As per the latest update, royal expert Katie Nicholl was told that the queen might seem "publicly supportive" of the couple's decision, but she is hurt inside. According to Vanity Fair, the queen wants to get the issue resolved quickly as she believes that it could be "damaging to the monarchy."