Funeral of Queen Elizabeth II: Who Was Invited and Who Wasn’t? | World

The funeral of Queen Elizabeth II on Monday (19/9) must be one of the biggest gatherings of royalty and politicians held in the UK in decades.

Invitations were sent out over the weekend, with around 500 heads of state and foreign dignitaries expected to attend.

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Most of the leaders were invited to arrive on commercial flights and will be transported to the ceremony from a location in west London.

The funeral will be held at Westminster Abbey, which seats around 2,200 people.

Check below what is known so far about who will and will not be in attendance.

European royal families

King Willem-Alexander and Queen Maxima of the Netherlands have confirmed they will be at the funeral – Photo: Reuters via BBC

Members of royal families from across Europe, many of whom were blood relatives of the Queen, are expected.

Belgium’s King Philippe and Queen Mathilde have confirmed they will be there, as will King Willem-Alexander and his wife Queen Maxima, along with their mother, former Dutch Queen Princess Beatrix.

King Felipe and Queen Letizia of Spain also accepted the invitation, as did the royal families of Norway, Sweden and Denmark.

President Joe Biden will attend along with First Lady Jill Biden. — Photo: EPA via BBC

The White House confirmed that the president Joe Biden will attend along with the first lady, Jill Biden.

There were doubts whether Biden would invite his predecessor, Donald Trump, but limits on the size of delegations mean former presidents may not necessarily be able to attend.

There has been speculation that some former presidents and first ladies — particularly the Obamas — may receive private invitations.

Jimmy Carter, who was president from 1977 to 1981, did not receive an invitation, his office told Politico.

Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi will attend. — Photo: Reuters via BBC

Leaders from across the Commonwealth, for whom the Queen served as head of state throughout her reign, are expected to participate.

Australian Prime Minister Anthony Albanese accepted the invitation, as did New Zealand Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern and Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau.

Several governors-general who serve as representatives of the monarchy in a Commonwealth realm are expected to appear with the leaders of their countries.

Former Bangladeshi Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina and Sri Lankan President Ranil Wickremesinghe also accepted invitations. Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi has not yet confirmed whether he will go.

German President Frank-Walter Steinmeier and Italian President Sergio Mattarella will attend the funeral. — Photo: Reuters via BBC

Other world leaders who have accepted invitations include Irishman Taoiseach Micheal Martin, German President Frank-Walter Steinmeier and Italian President Sergio Mattarella, as well as European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen.

South Korean President Yoon Suk-Yeol and Brazilian President Jair Bolsonaro and First Lady Michele also confirmed their presence.

Japanese Emperor Naruhito, Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan and French President Emmanuel Macron are also expected to make the trip.

It is unclear whether Chinese President Xi Jinping, whose visits to Kazakhstan and Uzbekistan this week will mark the first time he has left China since the start of the Covid-19 pandemic, will receive an invitation or if he would accept it.

The Islamic Republic of Iran, subject to international sanctions over its nuclear program, will only be represented by one ambassador, Whitehall sources said.

Vladimir Putin is among the world leaders who were not invited. — Photo: Reuters via BBC

No representatives from Russia, Belarus or Myanmar were invited, says James Landal, the BBC’s diplomatic affairs reporter.

Diplomatic relations between Britain and Russia have collapsed since Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, and a spokesman for Russian President Vladimir Putin said last week that he was “not considering” attending the funeral.

The invasion was launched partially from the territory of Belarus, whose president, Aleksandr Lukashenko, is a close ally of Putin.

The UK has also significantly reduced its diplomatic presence in Myanmar since a military coup in the country in February 2021.

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