Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif joined a host of foreign royals, officials, and heads of state and governments on Saturday for the coronation of King Charles III in a symbolic ceremony at Westminster Abbey. The ceremony marked the first occasion in 70 years that a British monarch ascended the throne, with the last being Queen Elizabeth II. Over 400 VVIPs, including 100 heads of state and governments, attended the event.
Dating back to the 11th century, the British monarchy is one of the oldest political institutions in Western Europe. Before the king arrived, processions took place in the abbey involving faith leaders and representatives, representatives from some Commonwealth countries, carrying flags and accompanied by governors general and the prime minister.
The Archbishop of Canterbury Justin Welby presided over the ceremony and administered the Coronation Oath to the King. King Charles III was presented to the people, a tradition dating back to Anglo-Saxon times, before he was proclaimed the “undoubted King” standing beside the 700-year-old Coronation Chair. He received the regalia, including the Sovereign’s Orb and scepters before St. Edward’s Crown was placed on his head.
After performing a number of rituals, King Charles III moved from the coronation chair to a throne and was crowned with St. Edward’s crown, becoming the seventh monarch to wear it after Charles II, James II, William III, George V, George VI, and Elizabeth II. His second wife, Camilla, was separately crowned queen during the ceremony.
As Prince of Wales, King Charles III had a special affection for the people of Pakistan, which was reflected over the years in his work through his charities and patronage of art. In the aftermath of the 2005 earthquake, he and his wife Camilla visited Pakistan from 29 October to 3 November 2006. Since 2017, the Prince’s Trust, a charity founded by the King, has been helping young people in Pakistan get into education, jobs, and training through “Enterprise Challenge Pakistan.” The British Asia Trust, a charity founded by King Charles III in 2007 in collaboration with some South Asian business leaders, aims to address widespread poverty, inequality, and injustice in South Asian countries, including Pakistan.