UNITED KINGDOM. London: In the aftermath of Queen Elizabeth’s demise, followed by days of international mourning, reports have emerged suggesting that Britain has not invited representatives from Russia, Belarus, and Myanmar to attend the late Queen’s state funeral to be held following Monday, according to a Whitehall source on Tuesday.
The source also confirmed that Iran would only be represented on the ambassadorial level.
Britain, along with other Western allies, has consistently evaded Russia and supported Ukraine’s cause in the ongoing crisis. Moreover, Britain has actively sought to isolate Russia and its ardent ally Belarus on the world stage by imposing strict economic sanctions and other measures in response to Moscow’s “special military operation” against Ukraine since February 24.
Additionally, Myanmar has also been cast aside and received no invitation to the state funeral as Britain has vocally condemned the junta government’s reported atrocities of massacre and ethnic cleansing against the minority Rohingya community.
Meanwhile, about 500 foreign dignitaries are expected to attend the late monarch’s funeral in London, with invites being sent to the heads of state of most countries with which Britain has healthy diplomatic relations, the BBC reported.
A host of world leaders, from U.S. President Joe Biden and First Lady Jill Biden to the prime ministers of Canada, Australia, and New Zealand, have all confirmed attendance for the event, likely to be one of Britain’s largest diplomatic gatherings in years.
The international dignitaries will join senior members of the royal family and newly-elected Prime Minister Liz Truss, as well as past leaders, at the grand Westminster Abbey. This historic church can easily accommodate 2,000 people at once.
“This is the biggest international event we have hosted in decades,” the Whitehall source said.