VIPs including foreign royals, world leaders and other overseas dignitaries have started to arrive at Buckingham Palace tonight for a glittering reception hosted by King Charles III and Queen Camilla the night before his historic Coronation at Westminster Abbey.
Some 100 heads of state will be in London for the ceremony tomorrow, with international representatives from 203 countries due to attend.
France’s President Emmanuel Macron, the Presidents of Germany and Italy, Frank-Walter Steinmeier and Sergio Mattarella, and Pakistan’s Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif will be among those in Westminster Abbey. Chinese Vice-President Han Zheng, who presided over a civil liberties crackdown in Hong Kong, is also on the King’s guest list, a move described as ‘outrageous’ by Conservative MPs.
Earlier today the King, who is head of the Commonwealth, attended a Commonwealth Heads of Government leaders’ meeting and garden reception at London’s Marlborough House.
He later went on a surprise walkabout in The Mall meeting royal fans with the Prince and Princess of Wales, shaking dozens of outstretched hands and laughed when one man asked if he was ‘nervous for tomorrow’, while another royal fan with a strong accent said: ‘Love you, I’m from Italy,’ and a third told the King, ‘Good luck for tomorrow’.
Charles took a break from a busy schedule of meetings and official engagements, including a final coronation rehearsal at Westminster Abbey, to go on the walkabout which lasted more than 20 minutes with his son and daughter-in-law.
Preparations for the coronation are nearing their completion with The Mall decorated with huge union flags and others from the Commonwealth and crash barriers and other crowd control measures in place.
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Diplomatic cars form a procession on The Mall near to Buckingham Palace in central London
King Charles reacts as he meets well-wishers during a walkabout on the Mall
Hassanal Bolkiah, Sultan of Brunei, arrives to King Charles’ reception at Buckingham Palace
Queen Letizia of Spain arriving at Buckingham Palace
Grand Duchess Maria Teresa and Grand Duke Henri of Luxembourg attend the Coronation Reception for overseas guests
Source: | This article originally belongs to Dailymail.co.uk