In Pictures: World leaders, mourners at Queen’s funeral

BY: Graphic.com.gh
In Pictures: World leaders, mourners at Queen’s funeral
In Pictures: World leaders, mourners at Queen’s funeral

Mourners arrived at Westminster Abbey for the Queen’s state funeral, with members of the royal family and world leaders among 2,000 people at the ceremony.

Kings and queens, presidents, prime ministers, celebrities and friends from across the globe were among the 2,000 guests at the Queen's funeral service at Westminster Abbey.

Here's who was in the abbey, and where they were seated.

President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo and wife, Mrs Rebecca Akufo-Addo arriving at the funeral inside Westminster Abbey.

The Royal Family

Closest to the Queen's coffin were her four children and their spouses. King Charles III and his wife Camilla, the Queen Consort, sat alongside the Princess Royal and her husband, the Duke of York and the Earl and Countess of Wessex.

The Duke and Duchess of Sussex sat directly behind the King while the Prince and Princess of Wales sat across the aisle from them.

All of the Queen's eight grandchildren sat in the front two rows, days after they stood together in vigil at the lying-in-state. Prince George, nine, and Princess Charlotte, seven, were the Queen's only great-grandchildren to attend the service.

Prince Andrew's ex-wife the Duchess of York was in the second row next to her daughter Princess Eugenie.

She was sat next to the Queen's nephew, the Earl of Snowdon. The earl, David Armstrong-Jones, is the son of the Queen's late sister, Princess Margaret and the photographer Antony Armstrong-Jones.

His sister Lady Sarah Chatto, who was close to the Queen, was also at the service with her husband Daniel Chatto and her two sons.

From L-R: Prince Harry, Princess Beatrice, Lady Louise Windsor, Viscount Severn, Prince William, Princess Eugenie, Peter Phillips and Zara Tindall

Other members of the Queen's family sat in the first few rows included her cousins, the Duke of Kent and Prince Michael of Kent.

Some of the Queen's god children were also there including Princess Diana's brother, Earl Spencer.

Close friends also attended. Ladies-in-waiting Lady Susan Hussey and Dame Mary Morrison, were seen arriving alongside Angela Kelly, the Queen's personal dresser and one of her closest confidents.

Heads of foreign governments

About 100 presidents and heads of government were thought to have been in the abbey.

US President Joe Biden and his wife Jill were sat in the 14th row behind the Polish president Andrzej Duda and his wife Agata Kornhauser-Duda.

The president of France, Emmanuel Macron, was with his wife Brigitte. Mr Macron, who met the Queen three times, had said that she had been "a friend of France, a kind-hearted queen, who has left a lasting impression on her country and her century".

Other kings andqueens from The Netherlands, Sweden, Spain, Norway and Belgium also attended - as did the Grand Duke and Duchess of Luxembourg.

It also marked the first international visit for the Emperor and Empress of Japan since they ascended the throne three years ago.

Malaysia's King Sultan Abdullah Sultan Ahmad Shah and Queen Tunku Azizah Aminah Maimunah Iskandariah were seated behind King Abdullah II and Queen Rania of Jordan.

The Guardian reports that it was the beginning of the end. Out went the official notice on the closely followed queue tracker: “To avoid disappointment please do not set off to the join the queue”.

Mathematics dictated that, with the lying in state due to end on Monday at 6.30am, and a 13 hour wait forecast, the queue was half a day from closing.

The waits had felt necessary for some, making friends and telling stories as they went. But it was not so easy for others: more than 1,000 people have had to received medical care since the lying in state began on Thursday, the London ambulance service, said. A total of 136 had even ended up in hospital.

Others, though, were only just arriving. Joe Biden, the US president, had landed on Saturday night to pay his respects at the funeral, taking his armoured limousine, ‘the Beast’, from Stansted airport. Many, like the South African president, Cyril Ramaphosa, signed a condolence book at Lancaster House. Plenty also chose to make their own journey to Westminster Hall to see the Queen’s coffin.

Jair Bolsonaro, the rightwing president of Brazil, on his first official trip to London, was one of those, arriving on the elevated viewing gallery for foreign dignitaries with his wife, Michelle. It is two weeks from a presidential election yet the incumbent, behind in the polls, felt it appropriate to travel to Britain, arriving at the embassy in the capital to a crowd of perhaps a couple of hundred supporters.

It is not supposed to be a political trip for any of the world leaders coming to London. But that did not stop the Brazilian leader, who, a few minutes later, addressed the crowd in the street from the balcony, wielding a microphone and delivering a none-too subtle campaign speech. “We are a country that does not want to discuss the legalisation of drugs, that does not want to discuss the legalisation of abortion and a country which does not accept gender ideology,” Bolsonaro declared.

Not everybody wanted to be the story. A to and fro over Mohammed bin Salman, the crown prince of Saudi Arabia, accused of orchestrating the murder of journalist Jamal Khashoggi, was apparently resolved on Sunday when the Foreign Office confirmed he would not be attending the funeral. Protests are planned in London on Monday and his presence would have undoubtedly been a distraction.

Others, though, opted for style. Emmanuel Macron, arrived in Westminster on foot with his wife, Brigitte, wearing shades, a black scarf, charcoal grey trousers and – in common with partner – black trainers. Biden arrived in the late afternoon, driven in that limousine. On the balcony inside Westminster Hall, accompanied by his wife, Jill, he made the sign of the cross and placed his hand on his heart.

French President Emmanuel Macron with his wife, Brigitte, visiting Queen Elizabeth II lying in state in London. Photograph: Enrico Mattia Del Punta/NurPhoto/Rex/Shutterstock

Related: LIVE VIDEO: Funeral rites of Queen Elizabeth II

Remembering the past is often the easy part. The future, however, is less certain. Jacinda Ardern, the prime minister of New Zealand, appearing on the BBC on Sunday morning, said she believed it was “likely” that New Zealand would become a republic in her lifetime. “Even the Queen herself has observed and acknowledged the evolution over time in our relationships,” she said; although the 42-year-old leader said a change in constitutional status was not one she had “any intent of instigating”.

King Charles III was not short of meetings and activity a day before his mother’s funeral. There was an audience with Liz Truss at 12.15pm, then a meeting with prime ministers from the Commonwealth realms, countries that still have the British monarch as their head of state. One of those was Gaston Browne, the prime minister of Antigua and Barbuda, who last week, following the death of the Queen, said he wants to hold a referendum becoming a republic within three years, although the monarch appeared cheery enough in the photo of their meeting.

With time running out, it was inevitable that some would crash into the news agenda. Prince Andrew chose Sunday to release his own statement of tribute. The 62-year-old was stripped of his royal duties and essentially exiled from the royal family after he had paid out around £12m to settle a claim of alleged sexual abuse brought by Virginia Giuffre after she was trafficked by his friend and convicted sex offender Jeffery Epstein.