These world leaders will not be at Queen Elizabeth's funeral

A a parade of world leaders from all over the world descends on London on Monday to pay their last respects of Queen Elizabeth II, who died on September 8 96 years old.

Approximately 500 heads of state, royalty and other foreign dignitaries are invited to state funeral, According to to the Associated Press. Among those gathering at Westminster Abbey to bury the Queen are President Joe Biden and representatives from across the Commonwealth, including Australia’s leader Anthony Albanese, which provided transportation for the attendance of several Pacific leaders. Hundreds of British politicians, war veterans and British charity workers are also in attendance.

But not everyone made the guest list. The leaders of several countries were not invited, and others preferred not to go.

Read more: Watch live: The funeral of Queen Elizabeth II

Diplomatic relations and public opinion play a role in the exclusion of some figures, although cost is also a factor, as the royal family does not want to be seen as lavish, according to Cindy McCreary, a senior lecturer in history at the University of Sydney who specializes in the monarchy and colonialism.

In August, sharply rising food prices pushed shop price inflation to the highest level since 2005. On Friday, the pound hit a 37-year low against the US dollar amid economic woes. The British government has yet to reveal the cost of the funeral, but it is expected to cost taxpayers millions of dollars.

Capacity is another limitation. McCreary adds that space at Westminster Abbey is limited to about 2,000 people. As well as family members and dignitaries from the UK, there is pressure to ensure that people awarded British honors can attend, along with friends and staff of the Queen. “Before we consider who didn’t make it, we need to remember that the priority is to make sure the deserving people did.” For that reason, former US presidents, including Donald Trump and Barack Obama, have been invited to an alternative memorial service that will was held on Wednesday in Washington, DC

A mourner holds a portrait of Queen Elizabeth II next to the wall of the United Kingdom Embassy in Luhansk People's Republic Square, September 9, 2022, in Moscow, Russia.  Russian President Vladimir Putin does not plan to fly to Elizabeth II's funeral, a Kremlin spokesman said (Contributor/Getty Images)

A mourner holds a portrait of Queen Elizabeth II next to the wall of the United Kingdom Embassy in Luhansk People’s Republic Square, September 9, 2022, in Moscow, Russia. Russian President Vladimir Putin is not planning to fly to Elizabeth II’s funeral, a Kremlin spokesman said

Contributor/Getty Images

Several countries were not invited to the Queen’s funeral

Representatives of Russia and Belarus were not invited to the queen’s funeral the invasion of Ukraineso does Russian President Vladimir Putin I will not attend. The Russian Foreign Ministry criticized his missing invitation.

“We consider this attempt to use a national tragedy that touched the hearts of millions of people around the world for geopolitical purposes and to settle scores with our country deeply immoral,” the statement said. 15th of September press release. It added that London was “making divisions to support its opportunistic aims”.

Read more: The death of Queen Elizabeth may cause some countries to change their ties with the British monarchy

Myanmar’s leaders were also not invited, according to Reuters. The nation’s army from Southeast Asia staged a coup in 2021overthrowing the democratically elected government and overseeing a violent crackdown on dissent.

BBC says North Korea, Iran and Nicaragua were asked to send ambassadors, but representatives of Syria, Venezuela and Afghanistan no received an invitation. McCreary points out that the UK does not have full diplomatic relations with the latter countries.

Chinese Vice President Wang Qishan visits the British Embassy in Beijing to honor the death of Queen Elizabeth II of the United Kingdom, September 12, 2022. (Xie Huanchi/Xinhua via Getty Images)

Chinese Vice President Wang Qishan visits the British Embassy in Beijing to honor the death of Queen Elizabeth II of the United Kingdom, September 12, 2022.

Xie Huanchi/Xinhua via Getty Images

Some leaders invited to Queen Elizabeth’s funeral declined

Others have RSVP-ed no. Chinese President Xi Jinping was invited to the funeral, According to on the BBC, but he sends the Chinese Vice President Wang Qishan instead.

There were reports that a Chinese delegation was prevented from paying their respects to the Queen as she lay in state at Westminster Hall. Now Wang’s presence has prompted criticism by a group of British Conservative MPs who were banned from entering China after the UK sanctioned four Chinese officials for alleged rights abuses in Xinjiang.

Xi’s priorities are elsewhere. He made a trip last week to Kazakhstan and Uzbekistanwhere he attended a meeting of the Shanghai Cooperation Organization (SCO), a regional security and trade bloc whose other members include India, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Pakistan, Russia, Tajikistan and Uzbekistan.

“Being able to be with friends who will pay tribute to him is much more important than engaging with a major Western democracy and other world leaders,” said Steve Tsang, director of the SOAS China Institute at the University of London. “Xi can effectively set the tone for the SCO meetings, but will have to follow British protocols at the Queen’s state funeral. He sees no reason to do that,” he adds.

Read more: What you need to know about Queen Elizabeth II’s funeral

Pope Francis, head of the Catholic Church, who met the Queen in 2014 in Rome, will not attend the ceremony. Vatican diplomat Archbishop Paul Gallagher will go instead, According to to the Vatican.

Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi was not present, According to to guard. Instead, India is represented by the country’s president, Draupadi Murmu. Modi gave the day of the Queen’s death before her ill condition was widely publicized speech in which he called on India to renounce its colonial ties.

Reuters reports that Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman has been invited but is not expected to attend. Human rights groups criticized the invitation to Saudi Arabia’s de facto ruler over his involvement in the killing of a government critic and journalist Jamal Khashoggi. Saudi Arabia is expected to be represented by Prince Turki bin Mohammed al Saud, a minister of state and cabinet member, according to Reuters.

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Write to Amy Gunia c [email protected].

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Write to Amy Gunia c [email protected].

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