Friday, 16 November, 2018

Take action on plastic waste, Queen Elizabeth tells Commonwealth member states

December 1953 The Queen and Prince Philip peered over the railings of the SS Gothic in the Panama Canal during their Commonwealth tour Image December 1953 The Queen and Prince Philip peered over the railings of the SS Gothic in the Panama Canal during their Commonwealth tour
Jay Anderson | 20 April, 2018, 01:47

"It is my honest wish that the Commonwealth will continue to offer stability and continuity for future generations, and will decide that one day the Prince of Wales should carry on the important work started by my father in 1949", the Queen said as she opened the Commonwealth Heads of Government summit at Buckingham Palace on Thursday.

Although Commonwealth leaders are due to vote on Friday about the future leadership, it seems the job will fall to the heir to the throne after all.

While Mr Turnbull once led the campaign for Australia to become a republic, he said there was no inconsistency with wanting a British monarch to run the Commonwealth.

The Queen, 91, became Head of Commonwealth after her mother died in 1952.

Queen Elizabeth, who turns 92 on Saturday, welcomed leaders from the 53 Commonwealth nations - mostly former British colonies - to Buckingham Palace to start two days of talks focused on trade, marine protection and tackling cyber crime.

"And so, ladies and gentlemen, I pray that this Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting will not only revitalize the bonds between our countries, but will also give the Commonwealth a renewed relevance to all citizens, finding practical solutions to their problems and giving life to their aspirations", he continued.

Asked whether Prime Minister May thought Charles, the Prince of Wales, should be the next head, the Downing Street spokesman said: "This is obviously a decision that is taken later in the week, and a decision taken by all the members together".




"It is my honest wish that the Commonwealth will continue to offer stability and continuity for future generations and will decide that one day the Prince of Wales will carry on the important work started by my father in 1949", the Queen said during her address at the Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting (CHOGM) at Buckingham Palace.

The position of Commonwealth Chair-in-office, held by the government leader of the CHOGM host country, will be transferred at the summit from the Prime Minister of Malta Dr Joseph Muscat to British premier May who will hold the post until the 26th CHOGM expected in 2020. Forty-six government leaders from the 53 nations attended, along with foreign ministers.

Outside, more than 100 officers and soldiers from the Coldstream Guards were in honour guard, wearing scarlet tunics and bearskins, as a 53 gun salute marked the formal opening.

'We are certain that, when he will be called upon to do so, he will provide solid and passionate leadership for our Commonwealth'.

The prime minister also thanked the Queen for hosting the event, calling the monarch a "steadfast and fervent champion" of the Commonwealth.

But the Queen's comments are so significant because it is exceptionally rare for members of the Royal Family or spokespeople from the Palace to publicly discuss what happens once Her Majesty's reign ends. May has apologized and the government has set up a team to help resolve the issue, which has been raised by some Commonwealth leaders.

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