Presidents, prime ministers, and monarchs from around the globe will journey to London over the weekend to pay their respects to Queen Elizabeth and attend a reception at Buckingham Palace to be hosted by King Charles the day earlier than her funeral.
US President Joe Biden and French President Emmanuel Macron are among the many most high-profile friends from abroad who’ve confirmed they are going to be attending.
Heads of state and different senior overseas dignitaries might be requested to collect on the Royal Hospital, a retirement and nursing dwelling for veteran troopers in west London, and are anticipated to journey in teams to Westminster Abbey, a senior Buckingham Palace official mentioned.
The funeral might be one of many largest policing occasions in Britain’s historical past as world leaders, kings and queens and big crowds from dwelling and overseas descend upon London for the occasion.
King Charles and Camilla, the Queen Consort, will maintain a reception at Buckingham Palace on Sunday, the official state occasion earlier than the funeral.
Overseas dignitaries who do come to Britain may even be invited to go to the Queen’s Mendacity in State inside parliament’s Westminster Corridor forward of the funeral.
“Her Majesty’s passing has left many individuals, throughout many continents, with a profound sense of loss,” mentioned the Earl Marshal, Edward Fitzalan-Howard, the Duke of Norfolk, England’s most senior peer who’s answerable for state events.
“It’s our purpose and perception that the state funeral and occasions of the following few days will unite folks throughout the globe.”
Instantly after the funeral on Monday, Britain’s overseas minister James Cleverly will host a reception for friends at close by Church Home, as members of the royal household head to Windsor for the queen’s burial.
Whereas the costume code for the funeral is as much as Buckingham Palace, British diplomats are advising overseas attendees to put on darkish formal clothes, though nationwide costume can also be worn. Serving navy personnel will be capable to put on a ceremonial costume — with or with out swords.
Invitations were sent out by Britain to heads of state of nearly every country in the world apart from Syria, Venezuela, Afghanistan, Russia, Belarus, and Myanmar.
Syria and Venezuela are not invited because Britain does not currently have diplomatic relations with those states. Afghanistan was not invited due to the current political situation, a source said.
Russia and Belarus are not being invited to send any representatives because of the invasion of Ukraine.
In total, foreign office officials have handwritten around 1,000 invitations for the funeral and the reception with King Charles on Sunday.
The deadline to accept funeral invitations passes on Thursday, after which officials will finalise the seating plan.
A group of British lawmakers sanctioned by China have criticised the decision to invite the Chinese government to the funeral.
They demanded that China’s representatives are barred from the Palace of Westminster, where the queen’s body is lying in state, after parliament voted last year to call the treatment of the mainly Muslim Uighur community in Xinjiang as genocide.
Chinese Vice President Wang Qishan is expected to represent China at Queen Elizabeth’s funeral on Monday, a British foreign office source said on Thursday.
Britain’s government will not provide a guest list of all the foreign leaders who will attend, partly for security reasons.
The transport arrangements are being finalised, as is the final seating plan, a government official said.
Members of the royal families of several European countries, including Belgium and the Netherlands, have said that they will travel to pay their respects.
Among the politicians who will also attend are European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen, New Zealand Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern and the President of India Droupadi Murmu.