The world is in mourning over the death of Queen Elizabeth II. Citizens laid flowers in front of the palaces in London and Windsor and in Scotland, where the Queen died on Thursday. Politicians from around the world paid their respects to the Queen, who had been on the throne for 70 years.
In London, at Windsor Castle and at Balmoral Castle in Scotland, the ringing of bells was planned for Friday afternoon, and in London there was also a gun salute as a tribute to the Queen.
Also on Friday, her son, now King Charles III, plans to travel from Scotland to London with his wife Camilla. Charles was due to meet new Prime Minister Liz Truss for an initial meeting. A speech by the new monarch to the nation is planned for the evening.
Charles, 73, became king on the death of his mother, but formal proclamation as monarch will come at a special council meeting at St James's Palace in London on Saturday. Camilla (75) is queen.
Writing to the people hours after his mother's death, Charles said: "During this time of grief and change, my family and I are comforted and sustained by a knowledge of the respect and deep affection so widely bestowed upon the Queen ", it says in it.
The palace said there would be seven more days of mourning after the Queen's funeral. Until then, the flags at the royal palaces should also be flown at half-staff, with the exception of the royal standard when the king is present. The funeral is expected to take place on Monday September 19th. However, this has not yet been confirmed by the palace.
Death at Balmoral Castle
Queen Elizabeth II died on Thursday at the age of 96 at her Scottish country estate of Balmoral. After Tuesday she had formally tasked Liz Truss with forming a government there. It was the last picture the public saw of the Queen. She had a cane in her hand and was stooped, but she gave her familiar beaming laugh again.
She was in her 70s, longer than any other British monarch before her on the throne. Elizabeth II was the head of state of Great Britain and Northern Ireland and more than a dozen other countries, including Canada, New Zealand and Australia.
Behind his father Charles, Queen's grandson Prince William (40) is heir to the throne. Number two in line to the throne is nine-year-old Prince George, followed by his siblings Princess Charlotte and Prince Louis.
Although Elizabeth had no political power as a British monarch, she was considered one of the most important figures of her time. With an unwavering sense of duty and steadfastness, she led Britain through major changes.
appreciations around the world
Truss praised the Queen as "the rock on which modern Britain was built". The country grew and prospered under their rule. UN Secretary-General António Guterres said Elizabeth II was admired around the world for her "grace, dignity and devotion". "The world will long remember her dedication and leadership."
British musician Elton John was "deeply sad". "Queen Elizabeth was a big part of my life from childhood to now and I will miss her dearly," the musician wrote on Twitter.
US President Joe Biden called the Queen a unique stateswoman and "more than a monarch." As in the UK and US, the United Nations flag will fly at half-mast for the next few days.
China's head of state and party leader Xi Jinping spoke of a great loss for the British people, according to Chinese state television in his letter of condolence to King Charles.
There is also mourning in other states that used to belong to Great Britain and are now united in the Commonwealth. New Zealand Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern praised the monarch's "unwavering sense of duty". Australian Prime Minister Anthony Albanese highlighted her calm demeanor. In Brazil - not a Commonwealth country - a three-day state mourning was ordered.
"God Save the Queen"
Thousands of people had gathered in places in Great Britain on Thursday, laid flowers or sang the national anthem "God Save the Queen". Many broke down in tears as the flag was lowered at Buckingham Palace.
The Empire State Building in New York glowed purple and glittered silver in tribute to the Queen. In Rio de Janeiro, the statue of Christ was illuminated in red, blue and white. In Paris, the lights on the Eiffel Tower were turned off at night to honor the Queen.
Sports organizers interrupted or canceled planned competitions. Among other things, a golf tournament, horse racing and rugby games were affected, as well as at least the lower-class football games scheduled for Friday. It was initially unclear whether further games would be canceled on the weekend.
Years ago, meticulous plans were made for what would happen after the Queen's death. Her state funeral is expected on Monday September 19. Before that, King Charles III. embark on a funeral journey across the UK.
Queen since 1952
Born in 1926, the Queen became Queen in 1952. At that time Great Britain was still a colonial power. In 1997 Hong Kong was handed over to China as the last major colony. The Queen later maintained contact with the former territories through the Commonwealth. She completed hundreds of trips abroad, including several to Germany. She last visited the Federal Republic on a state visit in 2015. Her stations included Berlin, Frankfurt am Main and the former Bergen-Belsen concentration camp.
The most important trip is her visit to Ireland in 2011. This was celebrated as a gesture of reconciliation. The last time a British head of state had visited Dublin was before the country gained independence from Britain in 1911. However, the monarch always stayed out of political affairs. She also did not comment on her country's exit from the European Union (Brexit).
Elizabeth fell in love with Philip Mountbatten when she was 13. The Greek prince from a Danish-German noble family was her great support throughout her life. The marriage lasted until Philip's death in April 2021, when he died at the age of 99.