Queen Elizabeth II’s state funeral will take place on Monday, with over 2,000 guests, including 500 foreign dignitaries, expected at Westminster Abbey to lay the sovereign to rest.
Following thousands of British citizens queued for hours to pay their final respects to the Queen at Westminster Hall, the monarch’s coffin will be transported to Westminster Abbey for her state funeral on Monday.
It will be Britain’s first state funeral since the passing of Winston Churchill in 1965 and is expected by many to be the most-viewed funeral in history, surpassing the viewing figures of her former daughter-in-law Princess Diana’s burial in 1997.
Among the global figures expected at Westminster Abbey on Monday are a whole group of world leaders.
Firstly, the royal heads of the Netherlands, Denmark, Sweden, Qatar, Spain, Japan and King Philippe and Queen Mathilde of Belgium will make the trip to London to mourn their British counterpart.
Secondly, other than British political figures such as Prime Minister Liz Truss, the Scottish First Minister Nicola Sturgeon and Labour Party leader Keir Starmer, a whole raft of world leaders are expected to attend on Monday. Leaders will be transported to Westminster Abbey in shared buses.
This includes all of the EU 27’s heads of state or government will be present, as well as US President Joe Biden, Brazilian President Jair Bolsonaro and Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan.
In addition, the Vice-President of China, Wang Qishan, is expected to attend, which has shocked top figures within the British Conservative Party.
Ursula von der Leyen, Charles Michel and Jens Stoltenberg, in their roles as EU Commission President, EU Council President and NATO Secretary-General respectively, will also be among the guests at the funeral.
Furthermore, the heads of commonwealth countries such as Australia’s Prime Minister Anthony Albanese, the South African President Cyril Ramaphosa and current Canadian PM Justin Trudeau, as well as all former living Canadian PMs, will be on hand to pay their final respects to the Queen at Westminster Abbey.
Whereas, there is a long list of world leaders who have not been invited to the funeral due to poor state of diplomatic ties between the nations they presided over and the United Kingdom.
This includes Russia and Belarus due to the war in Ukraine, Iran, North Korea, Myanmar and Nicaragua, as well as Syria and Venezuela.