Biden pays respects to queen as world leaders arrive in London for funeral

Biden pays respects to queen as world leaders arrive in London for funeral

The entire United Kingdom observed a moment silence for Queen Elizabeth I at 8.30 p.m. GMT. This was because leaders from all over the world arrived in London to attend her state funeral. It is scheduled for Monday.

President Biden and other dignitaries arrived in London for the funeral, to which around 500 royals, heads of state and heads of government from around the globe have been invited.

Mr. Biden, first lady Dr. Jill Biden, paid their respects to the Queen at Westminster Hall on Sunday. Jane Hartley, U.S. Ambassador to the United Kingdom, joined them. The first lady and the president then signed the official condolence books for the queen at Lancaster House.

“She was as good in person and as beautiful in her image — decent, honourable, all about service,” Mr. Biden stated. “Our hearts go out to the royal family, King Charles and all the family. It’s a huge loss and you sometimes think you can’t overcome it. But, as I have told the king, she will be there every minute, every second. That’s a comforting thought. “

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President Biden and first lady Jill Biden pay their respects as they view the coffin of Queen Elizabeth II in Westminster Hall in London on Sept. 18, 2022.

JOE GIDDENS/POOL/AFP via Getty Images


Thousands of people continued to line up around the clock to file past the queen’s coffin as it lies in state at Parliament’s Westminster Hall, braving chilly overnight temperatures and waits of up to 17 hours. The eight grandchildren of the queen, led by Prince William, walked around the coffin with their heads bowed during a silent prayer on Saturday evening.

The miles-long queue at Westminster Hall closed to new arrivals on Sunday at 10: 30 p.m. local time so that everyone in line can file past the coffin before Monday morning, when it will be borne on a gun carriage to Westminster Abbey for the queen’s funeral. Sunday’s tribute was paid by Prince Andrew, the third child of the queen. “As our book closes, another opens. I will always hold you close to mine with my deepest love, gratitude, and will gladly walk into the next with your guidance,” he said.

Thousands of police officers from around the country will be on duty as part of the biggest one-day policing operation in London’s history.

Crowds gathered Sunday near Windsor Castle. The queen will be laid down at a private family service on Monday evening.

“I think it’s been amazing,” said Anna Pettigrew, a 55-year-old teacher. It’s been very emotional and it’s been a fitting tribute to a great queen. “

Camilla, the new queen consort, paid tribute to the queen in a video message, saying the monarch “carved her own role” as a “solitary woman” on a world stage dominated by men.

” I will always remember her smile. Camilla, who is married with King Charles III, said that her smile is unforgettable. A steady stream of people continued to pour into Westminster Hall, where the queen’s coffin lies in state, covered in the Royal Standard, and topped with a diamond-studded Crown. Since Wednesday’s first admission, the number of mourners has steadily increased. A queue stretched for at least five blocks along the River Thames to Southwark Park in the city’s southeast.

Honoring their patience, Charles and William made an unannounced visit Saturday to greet people in the line, shaking hands and thanking mourners in the queue near Lambeth Bridge.

Later all the queen’s grandchildren stood beside her coffin. William and Prince Harry, Charles’ sons, were joined later by Princess Anne’s children Zara Tindall, Peter Philips, and Prince Andrew’s daughters Princess Beatrice, and Princess Eugenie. The two children of Prince Edward — Lady Louise Windsor, and James, Viscount Severn — were also present.

William sat with his head at the coffin’s head and Harry at the feet. Both princes were military veterans and were dressed in uniform. Mourners filed past in silence.

Queen Elizabeth II's Grandchildren Mount Vigil At Westminster Hall
Prince William stands in front of the coffin of Queen Elizabeth II at Westminster Hall on Sept. 17, 2022 in London.

Yui Mok / Getty Images


“You could see that they were thinking hard about their grandmother, the queen,” said Ian Mockett, a civil engineer from Oxford in southern England. “Seeing them all together as a group of grandchildren was a nice thing, given the events that have occurred over the past few years. “

Harry was a British army officer who served in Afghanistan. He wore civilian clothes earlier in week as the queen’s coffin left Buckingham Palace. He is no longer a member of the royal family. He and his wife Meghan quit royal duties and moved to the United States in 2020. However, the king requested that Harry and William wear their military uniforms to the Westminster Hall Vigil.

Princes Beatrice, Eugenie and Mary issued a statement before the vigil praising their “beloved grandmother”. “

” We, like many, believed you’d be around forever. We all miss you so much. You were our matriarch, guide, and our loving hand that guided us through this world. We will always remember the lessons and memories you taught us, and we will treasure them forever,” the sisters wrote.

The four royal children, Charles, Princess Anne and Prince Andrew, held a similar vigil at the coffin on Friday.

A man lunged at a coffin on Friday, breaking the silence in the hall. London police said Sunday that a 28-year-old London man, Muhammad Khan, has been charged with behavior intended to “cause alarm, harassment or distress.” He will appear in court Monday.

The lying-in-state continues until early Monday morning, when the queen’s coffin will be moved to nearby Westminster Abbey for the funeral, the finale of 10 days of national mourning for Britain’s longest-reigning monarch. The coffin of the late queen will be taken through London’s historic center on a gun carriage after the service at the abbey. The coffin will then be transported in a hearse to Windsor where it will be buried alongside Prince Philip, her husband who died last year.

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