Mourners make room: Queen’s coffin arrives at Buckingham Palace

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The late Queen Elizabeth II is back on London soil. The Royal Airforce plane carrying the Queen’s coffin lands in the west of the British capital in the evening. Thousands line the streets. Charles III takes the coffin. received at Buckingham Palace.

Five days after her death in Scotland, the Queen was transferred to London today. The body of Queen Elizabeth II was flown in from Edinburgh and in the evening a British Air Force transport plane landed at Northolt Air Force Base in the west of the British capital. The former monarch’s daughter, Princess Anne, was on board. The body was then taken to Buckingham Palace, where it now belongs to King Charles III, who had previously returned from Northern Ireland. is received. Also in attendance were Charles’ brothers, Prince Andrew and Prince Edward, and all their grandchildren, including Prince William and Prince Harry.

As in Edinburgh, thousands of people lined the hearse’s route and in front of the palace along the streets of London to catch a glimpse of the coffin. When the car reached Buckingham Palace, people greeted it with applause. The car was lit from within, so that the coffin could be seen through the windows despite the darkness. It was a state hearse, the design of which was approved by the Queen herself.

On Wednesday afternoon, the coffin will be driven from the palace to Parliament, where it will be set up in Westminster Hall for a few days. Thousands are expected along the way. In Germany, the major television stations ARD, ZDF and RTL also broadcast the procession live.

Die-hards are looking for a place for the funeral procession

Thousands of soldiers rehearsed for the funeral procession before dawn on Tuesday. Die-hard royalists were already queuing along the route to get a good look at what was happening. King Charles III meanwhile visited the province of Northern Ireland with Queen Camilla. He was greeted in Belfast, given condolences and attended a church service. It was Charles’ 40th visit to Northern Ireland, which together with England, Wales and Scotland make up the United Kingdom.

Regional Parliament Speaker Alex Maskey praised the late monarch for breaking down barriers and reconciling the former Civil War zone. “She has shown that a small and insignificant gesture — a visit, a handshake, crossing the street or a few words of Irish — can make a huge difference when it comes to changing attitudes and building relationships,” Maskey said on Hillsborough Castle. The Queen maintained both British and Irish customs. She emphasized that one tradition is not affected by trying to show respect for another.

The Queen's coffin is carried from an airplane at Northolt Air Force Base.

The Queen’s coffin is carried from an airplane at Northolt Air Force Base.

(Image: via REUTERS)

Report: Russia not invited to state funeral

Commentators attributed historical significance to the statements. After all, Maskey is a member of the Catholic-Republican Sinn Fein party, which advocates reunification with the EU member Republic of Ireland and was previously considered the political arm of the terrorist organization IRA. Many Sinn Fein voters strongly reject the monarchy as a representative of a once authoritarian regime. Charles’ great-uncle Louis Mountbatten was assassinated by the IRA in 1979.

Representatives of Russia are not welcome at the state funeral on Monday (September 19) of hundreds of heads of state and government, members of royal families and other dignitaries in London, including US President Joe Biden and Federal President Frank-Walter Steinmeier. According to a media report, representatives of Russia and Belarus, against whom Britain has imposed numerous sanctions over the Russian war of aggression against Ukraine, and Southeast Asian Myanmar have not received an invitation. The PA news agency also reported, citing government sources, that Iran, with which diplomatic relations are tense, should only be represented at the ambassadorial level.

Arrest of opponents of the monarchy: too little freedom of expression?

Following the arrests of opponents of the monarchy during the Queen’s ceremonies, there is also a debate in Britain about a possible lack of freedom of expression. Ruth Smeeth, head of the Index on Censorship organization, described the arrests following protests against the monarchy as “deeply worrying,” according to the BBC. The royal ceremonies must not intentionally or unintentionally restrict the freedom of expression of citizens.

In Scotland, two 22-year-olds have been arrested in recent days for breaching the peace when the new King Charles III was proclaimed. and a funeral procession for the Queen. On Tuesday, one of the two protesters who had explicitly turned against Prince Andrew was charged. Andrew, 62, is especially controversial for his involvement in the abuse scandal involving the late American multimillionaire Jeffrey Epstein. There was also an arrest in the English university city of Oxford. Video footage from London also shows police turning away a woman holding a sign that reads “Not my king” at the entrance to parliament.

Jodie Beck of the Liberty organization said it was deeply disturbing that the police used their powers in a harsh and punitive manner, the BBC said. London’s Metropolitan Police pointed to the enormous challenge the police face at the royal mass events, but also assured that the public had the right to protest.

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