Before the funeral: King Charles III. welcomes guests from all over the world

Numerous representatives of royal families and state guests from all over the world come to the funeral of Queen Elizabeth II.

Before the funeral: King Charles III. welcomes guests from all over the world

Numerous representatives of royal families and state guests from all over the world come to the funeral of Queen Elizabeth II. At the same time, thousands of people are waiting in a kilometer-long queue to pay their last respects to their queen in Westminster Hall.

Before the state funeral for Queen Elizabeth II on Monday, King Charles III. received state guests from all over the world at Buckingham Palace the night before. US President Joe Biden and First Lady Jill Biden are also expected. A number of heads of state and government trundled into the British capital over the weekend. Charles received Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau, New Zealand Prime Minister Jacinda Adern and other Commonwealth officials on Saturday. Federal President Franz-Walter Steinmeier and his wife Elke Büdenbender are also flying to London today.

The coffin of Queen Elizabeth II, who died on September 8, was laid out in Westminster Hall - the oldest part of the British Parliament - and open to the public until early Monday morning. In the past few days, tens of thousands have stood in a kilometer-long queue for many hours, often overnight, to pay their queen one last visit and say goodbye. On Saturday, King Charles and Prince William paid a surprise visit to those waiting. The government is expected to close the line later Sunday to allow those waiting to walk past the coffin before the "lying-in-state," as the laying-out is called, ends.

A national minute's silence is scheduled for Sunday evening at 8 p.m. local time. Brits are invited to pause for a minute at home alone, but also together at events. Before that, the BBC plans to broadcast a pre-recorded video message from the king's consort, Camilla, which Britain's PA news agency pre-quoted. "She was always part of our lives," Charles' wife said. She is now 75 and can't remember anyone else at the helm, Camilla said, acknowledging the Queen's role as a female pioneer.

"She had these beautiful blue eyes that lit up her whole face when she smiled," Camilla said of the Queen. "I will always remember her smile. Her smile is unforgettable." The Queen's eight grandchildren - including Princes William and Harry - held a 15-minute vigil on Saturday night. For once, Harry was also allowed to wear a military uniform for the occasion. Although the 38-year-old has served in Afghanistan, he is now otherwise denied this due to his retirement from the royal family. However, after criticism that an exception was made for Andrew at a wake for the Queen's children, the rules changed for Harry too.

Meanwhile, police, intelligence and anti-terrorist units are busy conducting one of the largest security operations the British capital has ever seen. Preparations and checks have been underway for days to ensure the safety of hundreds of thousands of people who will be in London on Monday. Hundreds of monarchs, heads of state and government from around the world are also expected.

After a service at Westminster Abbey on Monday morning, the coffin will be taken in procession to Wellington Arch. The route takes in The Mall and Buckingham Palace. The actual burial will not take place in London but in Windsor to the west, where the coffin will be taken in a hearse. The Queen is to receive her final resting place on Monday evening at a private funeral in St George's Chapel at Windsor Castle - alongside her husband Prince Philip, who died last year.

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