Anthony Albanese talks climate with King Charles before Queen funeral, display pic of her, Bob Hawke

Anthony Albanese talks climate change in ’emotional’ meeting with King Charles and insists his support for an Australian republic wasn’t ‘awkward’- and will use a famous photo of Her Majesty and Bob Hawke to pay tribute to her

  • Australian Prime Minister Anthony Albanese has had an audience with King Charles III in London
  • He arrived on Saturday with his partner, Jodie Haydon, and a group of 10 ‘everyday Australians’
  • Mr Albanese went to Green Park to lay a wreath and signed a book of condolences for the Queen
  • The Prime Minister also met with the newly appointed Conservative UK Prime Minister Liz Truss
  • The Queen’s funeral: All the latest Royal Family news and coverage

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Prime Minister Anthony has met with King Charles III at Buckingham Palace in London, but has not changed his mind on Australia becoming a republic.

He also had a meeting the UK’s newly appointed Conservative Prime Minister Liz Truss and on Sunday will refer to a famous 1988 meeting between the Queen and former Labor Prime Minister Bob Hawke. 

Mr Albanese would not say what was discussed in the private audience due to royal protocol keeping all meetings strictly confidential, but hinted that climate change was part of his discussion.

The King has frequently spoken about the dangers of climate change for decades, and is well known for his support of environmental issues.

The discussion between King Charles III (left) and Australian Prime Minister Anthony Albanese (right) was kept secret due to 'protocol', but Mr Albanese hinted that they discussed environment issues, including climate change

The discussion between King Charles III (left) and Australian Prime Minister Anthony Albanese (right) was kept secret due to ‘protocol’, but Mr Albanese hinted that they discussed environment issues, including climate change

‘I’m not going to discuss any of that detail, protocol requires that, but King Charles of course has been on the record of his views over a very long period of time about environmental issues and including about climate change,’ Mr Albanese said.

Mr Albanese described meeting the King as ‘a warm gathering’ and that ‘this is a time of respect, that is what is required here’.

Asked if the palace meeting was awkward, given his republican views, he said: ‘I don’t find it difficult at all’.

‘It’s about respect to Queen Elizabeth and her extraordinary service over 70 years, the fact she continued to serve with extraordinary diligence and commitment and sense of duty is reflective of her generation as well, they gave so much in the post war period,’ he said.

Mr Albanese said it was a ‘great honour’ to officially relay his and Australia’s condolences for the death of The Queen to King Charles.

He told reporters the door was always open for the Royal Family to come to Australia.

‘As the Australian head of state he is always a welcome visitor and he always has been to Australia,’ he said. ‘I do intend to have further discussions with King Charles.’

Prime Minister Anthony Albanese signed the official book of condolences at Lancaster House in London

Prime Minister Anthony Albanese signed the official book of condolences at Lancaster House in London 

PM Anthony Albanese's partner Jodie Haydon was among the dignitaries signing the book of condolences at Lancaster House in London

PM Anthony Albanese’s partner Jodie Haydon was among the dignitaries signing the book of condolences at Lancaster House in London

Mr Albanese also lauded The Queen in a touching tribute speech for transcending barriers while maintaining a special bond with Australia.

The late monarch was a unifying force throughout her 70-year reign, the PM said in an address at an Australia House Commemorative Luncheon in London on Saturday.

‘Even as history continued to shape us, and the bond between our two nations evolved, the affection and respect in which we held Her Majesty remained – unchanged, undiminished,’ he said.

‘The Queen transcended barriers. You could be a republican, and still feel nothing but regard for her.’

During a visit to Australia in 2000, months after Australia held a republic referendum, The Queen expressed her deep connection to the nation.

The revered monarch said she ‘felt part of this rugged, honest, creative land’ and has ‘shared in the joys and the sorrows, the challenges and the changes that have shaped this country’s history’.

The Queen seems unmoved as Australia's then prime minister Bob Hawke leaps up when his horse wins the Queen Elizabeth Stakes at the Canberra Races

The Queen seems unmoved as Australia’s then prime minister Bob Hawke leaps up when his horse wins the Queen Elizabeth Stakes at the Canberra Races

In a second speech at Australian High Commission on Sunday, Mr Albanese will recall The Queen had ‘one of the most Australian experiences of all’ in sitting next to then-prime minister Bob Hawke at the races in 1988 when his horse was winning.

‘The photograph of these two connoisseurs of the turf in that moment is a perfect study in balance – The Queen sitting serenely, Bob going off like a firecracker in a suit,’ Mr Albanese will say.

‘Bob was criticised, but as he later reflected: “I took great pleasure a little later in pointing to an image of the Queen showing similar exultation when one of her horses won in England.”‘

He also hailed the monarch’s loyalty and unwavering commitment to royal life.

‘She celebrated our good times, and stood with us in our times of trial, bringing sympathy and comfort when it was so badly needed,’ Mr Albanese said.

Anthony Albanese will meet King Charles III and new UK Prime Minister Liz Truss during his stay in London, cementing Australia's important links with Great Britain

Anthony Albanese will meet King Charles III and new UK Prime Minister Liz Truss during his stay in London, cementing Australia’s important links with Great Britain

Soon after touching down, Mr Albanese and his partner Jodie Haydon laid a floral tribute, a small bouquet of white flowers, at Green Park in Westminster.

‘It’s a great honour to be representing Australia here,’ he said.

‘Quite clearly, what we can see all around us is the affection in which Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth was held by people here in the United Kingdom but also of course in Australia and right around the Commonwealth.’

The PM arrived in London with his girlfriend and a party of 10 ‘everyday Aussies’ including current Australian of the Year Dylan Alcott, who have also been invited to the funeral.

Mr Albanese said his visit was about ‘commemorating a life well-lived’.

He went straight to Green Park early on Saturday to lay his wreath among the thousands of bouquets which have been building throughout the city since the Queen’s death was announced on the evening of September 8.

PM Anthony Albanese arrived in London with girlfriend Jodie Haydon and a party of 10 'everyday Aussies' (pictured) including Dylan Alcott (centre), who have also been invited to the funeral

PM Anthony Albanese arrived in London with girlfriend Jodie Haydon and a party of 10 ‘everyday Aussies’ (pictured) including Dylan Alcott (centre), who have also been invited to the funeral

‘Paying our respects to Her Majesty,’ Mr Albanese said as he shared a photo at Green Park alongside Ms Haydon. ‘May she rest in eternal peace.’

Later, Mr Albanese was one of a handful of world leaders who sat down with new British Prime Minister Liz Truss.

Because the British Government is in a formal mourning period, there were no press conferences or statements from either side about the meetings, but Mr Albanese described it as ‘very positive’.

‘It was one that didn’t go into a great deal of detail. It was about the condolences, an opportunity to express condolences leader of government to leader of the UK government,’ he said.

Prime Minister Anthony Albanese also revealed on Sunday that he'd arrived and went straight to London's Green Park early on Sunday to lay a wreath among the thousands of bouquets (pictured with his partner, Jodie Haydon)

Prime Minister Anthony Albanese also revealed on Sunday that he’d arrived and went straight to London’s Green Park early on Sunday to lay a wreath among the thousands of bouquets (pictured with his partner, Jodie Haydon)

Downing Street has framed Anthony Albanese's impending conversation with the new Tory PM Liz Truss (pictured) as a chat rather than formal bilateral talks

Downing Street has framed Anthony Albanese’s impending conversation with the new Tory PM Liz Truss (pictured) as a chat rather than formal bilateral talks

‘We’ll continue to engage in the future. The economic relationship is very important. As you know, there was a trade agreement between Australia and the UK. 

‘That needs to be progressed through our parliamentary systems and we’re both very conscious of that.

‘The AUKUS arrangement is important as our alliance partners along with the United States. But the defence relationship with the United Kingdom, of course, goes back a very long, long way. 

‘And I’m sure that the relationship between Australia and the UK can be strengthened even further in the future,’ he said.

Australian Monarchist League chairman Philip Benwell said Charles has always kept a special place in his heart for Australia, particularly after spending time in regional Victoria in the 1970s.

‘King Charles has committed himself to following in the footsteps of his late mother and to likewise dedicate himself to the service of his people,’ he said.

‘He will always make time to meet with his Australian Prime Minister, and the gathering for the funeral of the late Queen offers an opportunity for this.’

Mr Albanese is also scheduled to have talks with his Canadian counterpart Justin Trudeau.

Anthony Albanese will view the Queen's coffin in Westminster Hall and sign the official condolence book at Lancaster House before a brief audience with King Charles (pictured) at Buckingham Palace

Anthony Albanese will view the Queen’s coffin in Westminster Hall and sign the official condolence book at Lancaster House before a brief audience with King Charles (pictured) at Buckingham Palace

Members of the public file past the coffin of Queen Elizabeth II, draped in the Royal Standard with the Imperial State Crown and the Sovereign's orb and sceptre, lying in state on the catafalque in Westminster Hall, at the Palace of Westminster

Members of the public file past the coffin of Queen Elizabeth II, draped in the Royal Standard with the Imperial State Crown and the Sovereign’s orb and sceptre, lying in state on the catafalque in Westminster Hall, at the Palace of Westminster

Leaked Government documents revealed plans for world leaders to travel en masse in a bus to Westminster Abbey for Monday’s 8pm (AEST) service, rather that using private cars.

British and US officials have since played down the prospect of US President Joe Biden having to travel on a bus into central London. Japanese Emperor Naruhito is expected to be among those travelling to the funeral on the shuttle. 

According to Politico, the 62-year-old and other visiting royals will be bussed to the service under strict Foreign Office guidance.

The website reported Belgium’s King Philippe and Queen Mathilde, Spain’s King Felipe and Queen Letizia, Sweden’s King Carl XVI Gustaf and Queen Silvia and the Netherlands’ King Willem-Alexander and Queen Maxima would also be put on a shuttle bus.

Some embassies have reportedly made as-yet unsuccessful efforts to request exceptions to the Foreign Office guidance.

A Number 10 spokeswoman refused to comment on the arrangements for individual dignitaries but accepted they will ‘differ depending on the needs of the different leaders’. 

New Zealand’s prime minister Jacinda Ardern was one of the first world leaders to pay her respects in London on Friday, while the prime minister of Bangladesh Sheikh Hasina touched down on Thursday afternoon.

US President Joe Biden and First Lady Jill will be able to take the armoured Beast to the Queen's funeral next week while other world leaders will be asked to take the shared bus, as is standard protocol

US President Joe Biden and First Lady Jill will be able to take the armoured Beast to the Queen’s funeral next week while other world leaders will be asked to take the shared bus, as is standard protocol

Jacinda Ardern ‘shares the sorrow’ of King Charles as she prepares to meet Royal Family and new PM Liz Truss 

New Zealand’s Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern confirmed she will meet the King, Prince of Wales and Prime Minister Liz Truss before the Queen’s funeral, but disclosed minimal details after arriving in the UK.

‘I’ll simply share the sorrow that New Zealand has and pass on our deepest condolences,’ she said at a press conference in London.

‘At the end of the day, although this is a period of transition for him, he has also lost his beloved mother. For us and New Zealand, that’s first and foremost.’

Ms Ardern, who said she is planning to attend the Queen’s lying in state at Westminster Hall before the funeral, also confirmed she will meet with Liz Truss.

The visiting PM said the Queen’s death and new King will be the ‘focus of conversation’ when she and Ms Truss meet.

She said she will also likely discuss Ukraine and the UK’s free trade agreement with New Zealand.

‘I am sure we will also transact our relationship as well, but it is all within the context of the week of mourning that the UK is currently in,’ she said.

Meeting William will be an opportunity to repay his support of New Zealand in 2019, when the royal flew to the country following the Christchurch massacre, Ms Ardern said.

‘The Prince of Wales has always been there for New Zealand in its times of grief,’ she said.

‘He’s been there for us in our times of grief and so this is a time for us to be there for him and his family too.’

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Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office officials reportedly sent 1,000 handwritten invitations – for both the reception and Monday’s funeral – to heads of state to almost every country in the world bar Syria, Venezuela, Afghanistan, Russia, Belarus and Myanmar. 

Mr Biden is expected to arrive this evening and French president Emmanuel Macron, German president Frank-Walter Steinmeier, Italian president Sergio Matarella and Canada’s Justin Trudeau are among other notable attendees.

The US presidential plane, known as Air Force One, tends to land at Stansted Airport on visits to Britain in order to avoid disruption at Heathrow.

It’s highly unlikely the president will be on board the shuttle bus with other dignitaries. Instead, he will likely travel by his armoured vehicle dubbed ‘The Beast’ while he’s in the capital. 

The custom-built Cadillac is said to have eight-inch thick doors, run-flat tires, bulletproof glass, its own oxygen supply, a couple of pints of the president’s blood and a completely sealed interior to ward off a chemical attack.

It is estimated to weigh between seven and nine tonnes.

Biden's motorcade The Beast crosses a bridge on the way to his summit with Putin in Geneva. It is believed it will make an appearance in London this weekend as the leader of the free world arrives for the Queen's funeral

Biden’s motorcade The Beast crosses a bridge on the way to his summit with Putin in Geneva. It is believed it will make an appearance in London this weekend as the leader of the free world arrives for the Queen’s funeral 

Floral Tributes are left at Green Park next to Buckingham Palace for Queen Elizabeth II before her funeral preparations get underway

Floral Tributes are left at Green Park next to Buckingham Palace for Queen Elizabeth II before her funeral preparations get underway 

Mourners form a massive queue near Tower Bridge this morning as they wait to see the Queen lying-in-state

Mourners form a massive queue near Tower Bridge this morning as they wait to see the Queen lying-in-state

Mourners queueing at Tower Bridge in central London this morning as they wait to pay their respects to the Queen

Mourners queueing at Tower Bridge in central London this morning as they wait to pay their respects to the Queen

Several hundred dignitaries from around the world will be in London to pay their respects to the Queen, in what is set to be one of the biggest logistical and diplomatic events in the UK in decades.

The official capacity of Westminster Abbey is 2,200 people, and it is expected to be full. The public will be able to watch the service live through television streams. 

Mr Albanese will join members of the Royal family, UK prime ministers past and present and key figures from public life at Westminster Abbey at 11am on Monday (8PM AEST).

Male dignitaries at the funeral will be advised to wear morning dress or dark lounge suits with a black tie, with dark day dresses and hats for female mourners.

National dress may also be worn, while serving military officers can wear ceremonial uniforms without swords.

People wake up after a night spent at a makeshift campsite set up along The Mall as temperatures plunge

People wake up after a night spent at a makeshift campsite set up along The Mall as temperatures plunge

What will happen at the ‘reception of the century’ on Sunday and who will be there?  

King Charles III is set to play host to hundreds of world leaders, dignitaries and VIPs at Buckingham Palace on Sunday, ahead of the Queen’s funeral on Monday. 

The grand reception will see them formally welcomed by the new king in a gathering of world leaders not seen in decades. 

Reports suggest Harry and Meghan were initially invited but are now not expected to attend because the event is for ‘working members’ of the Royal Family. It’s not clear whether Prince Andrew was invited.

Kate, who is now the Princess of Wales, Princess Anne and the Earl and Countess of Wessex will also be present. 

Male guests must wear lounge suits while women must opt for morning dress, without hats or decorations, in keeping with the sombre tone of the event. 

The roughly 500 attendees will meet in the picture gallery and state apartments at 6pm, where they will be served drinks and canapes, reports the Telegraph. 

Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office officials reportedly sent 1,000 handwritten invitations – for both the reception and Monday’s funeral – to heads of state to every country in the world bar Syria, Venezuela, Afghanistan, Russia, Belarus and Myanmar.

In terms of other royals, those expected to show up include: King Willem-Alexander and Queen Maxima of the Netherlands, King Harald V and Queen Sonja of Norway, and Prince Albert II and Princess Charlene of Monaco.

King Philip and Queen Mathilde of Belgium, Queen Margrethe II of Denmark and Crown Prince Frederik and Crown Princess Mary and King Carl XVI Gustaf and Queen Silvia of Sweden are also on the list. 

The former king of Spain Juan Carlos, who could soon face trial in the UK for harassing a former lover, and former Queen Sofia, have also been invited. 

US President Joe Biden and France’s Emmanuel Macron lead the big names of world leaders set to attend, joined by Canada’s Justin Trudeau and Australia’s Anthony Albanese. 

It is believed the Empress Masako of Japan, who retreated from public view 20 years ago, will also attend alongside Emperor Naruhito. 

Other world leaders include: 

– Droupadi Murmu, President of India

– Alexander Van der Bellen, President of Austria

– Gitanas Nauseda, President of Lithuania

– Ranil Wickremesinghe, Sri Lankan President

– Maia Sandu, President of Moldova 

– Frank-Walter Steinmeier, President of Germany

– Yoon Suk-yeol, South Korean President

– Jair Bolsonaro, President of Brazil

– Andrzej Duda, President of Poland

– Sergio Mattarella, President of Italy

– Charles Michel, President of the European Council

– Ursula von der Leyen, President of European Commission

– Egils Levits, President of Latvia

– Paula-Mae Weekes, President of Trinidad and Tobago

– Mohammad Shtayyeh, Palestinian Prime Minister

– Sauli Niinisto, President of Finland

– Katalin Novak, Hungarian President

– Michael D. Higgins, President of Ireland

– Micheál Martin, Taoiseach (prime minister) of Ireland

– Andrew Holness, Prime Minister of Jamaica

– Floyla Tzalam, Governor General of Belize

– Susan Dougan, Governor General of St Vincent and the Grenadines

– Sheikh Hasina, Prime Minister of Bangladesh

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