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Westminster Abbey can accommodate around 2,000 people, so only heads of state and one or two guests would have been invited to the first British state funeral in six decades.

London: Hundreds of royals and foreign leaders are expected to attend Queen Elizabeth II’s state funeral in London on Monday in one of the biggest diplomatic gatherings in decades. Westminster Abbey can hold around 2,000 people, so only heads of state and one or two guests would have been invited to the first British state funeral in six decades.

Meanwhile, a handful of countries have not been invited to the funeral due to political considerations – setting off a furious outburst in at least one case. Here are some of the main guests, and some who weren’t on the list:

A host of royals from Europe and beyond have confirmed their attendance at the funeral of one of the world’s oldest monarchs. Japan’s Emperor Naruhito and Empress Masako will come, on their first overseas trip since assuming the throne in 2019, a departure from Japanese tradition that rarely sees the emperor attend funerals. Europe’s royal families are intertwined after centuries of mixing their bloodlines, so it won’t be surprising to see several monarchs from the continent in the congregation.

King Willem-Alexander of the Netherlands, Queen Maxima and Crown Princess Beatrix, King Philippe of the Belgians, King Harald V of Norway and Prince Albert II of Monaco will all be present.

Queen Margrethe of Denmark, who canceled a series of events marking her 50th Jubilee following the death of her third cousin Queen Elizabeth, will also attend. Spain’s King Felipe VI will also attend – as will his father, former King Juan Carlos I, who abdicated in disgrace in 2014 and now lives in self-imposed exile in the United Arab Emirates.

US President Joe Biden and his wife Jill Biden top the list of diplomatic guests, after the White House confirmed they would attend the funeral. Unlike some other leaders who were asked to come on coaches organized by the British government, Biden was reportedly given permission to use his armored presidential limousine, known as The Beast.

French President Emmanuel Macron will also be present, the Elysee Palace said, to show the “unbreakable” bond with Britain and pay tribute to the “eternal queen”.

He is among other leaders allowed to use their own transport, British officials said. Strongman leaders Recep Tayyip Erdogan of Turkey and Jair Bolsonaro of Brazil are also coming.

Despite Britain’s divorce from the European Union, the head of the European Commission, Ursula von der Leyen, and the head of the European Council, Charles Michel, will also be present. Other heads of state at the funeral will include Presidents Sergio Mattarella of Italy, Frank-Walter Steinmeier of Germany, Isaac Herzog of Israel and Yoon Suk-yeol of Korea.

In a symbolic gesture to pay tribute to the Queen whose state visit in 2011 helped ease decades of tension, Irish Prime Minister Micheal Martin will also attend. Many leaders will come from countries that still had Elizabeth II as monarch and from members of the 56-nation Commonwealth.

Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau, Australian Prime Minister Anthony Albanese and New Zealand Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern, whose nations have Britain’s sovereign as head of state, are all set to come. Former British colonies will come from leaders including South African President Cyril Ramaphosa, Bangladeshi Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina, Sri Lankan President Ranil Wickremesinghe and Fijian Prime Minister Frank Bainimarama.

Russia and Belarus are among a small group of nations to be barred from the Queen’s funeral after Moscow invaded Ukraine, a British government source has said. not attend.

But not inviting a Russian representative to the queen’s funeral was “particularly blasphemous to the memory of Elizabeth II” and “deeply immoral”, the Foreign Ministry in Moscow said on Thursday. Korea was also snubbed, the British source said on condition of anonymity.

Lynn A. Saleh