Senior officials from Turkey, Palestine, Israel, Iran, and Lebanon will attend the funeral in Westminister Hall, while Syria was not invited
By MEE staff
The funeral of the late British monarch Queen Elizabeth II will be attended by representatives of several Middle Eastern states, while some have not been invited.
The funeral, due to take place on Monday, is expected to be the largest gathering of royals, prime ministers, presidents, and leaders from around the world in decades.
Queen Elizabeth II, who reigned since 1952, died on 8 September at Balmoral Castle in Scotland at the age of 96. Her coffin was moved on Wednesday to Westminster Hall in London, where it will lie in state for four days, allowing thousands of people to bid her farewell before the official funeral on Monday.
The UK has asked leaders to travel on commercial flights to London, from where they will be transported by buses to Westminster Hall for the state funeral. The medieval hall has room for around 2,200 people.
Almost 500 foreign dignitaries will attend the event on 19 September. But the UK’s Foreign Office said that officials from six countries were not invited to the funeral, which includes Syria, Russia, Belarus, Myanmar, Afghanistan and Venezuela.
An invitation at the level of ambassadorship was sent to the Islamic Republic of Iran, although Tehran has no ambassador in the UK. However, Iran’s ambassador in the UAE, Sayed Mohammad Hosseini, is reportedly attending the funeral, pending official confirmation.
Middle East leaders whose attendance has been confirmed are: Turkey‘s Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu, Israel‘s President Isaac Herzog, Lebanon‘s interim Prime Minister Najib Mikati, and Palestine‘s Prime Minister Mohammad Shtayyeh.
Meanwhile, Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman will reportedly travel to London to deliver the kingdom’s condolences to the royal family, a source told the Guardian, but there is still no confirmation on whether he will attend the funeral.
Leaders from Jordan, Morocco, Kuwait, United Arab Emirates, Oman, Qatar and Bahrain, who maintain friendly relationships with the UK and are governed by monarchies, are expected to attend. However, there were no official confirmations of who will represent these countries.
Middle East Eye