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Chinese president's special representative attends Queen Elizabeth II's funeral in Britain

Chinese President Xi Jinping's Special Representative Vice President Wang Qishan attends the state funeral for Queen Elizabeth II held at Westminster Abbey, together with heads of state from various countries, members of the royal family and government representatives, in London, Britain, Sept. 19, 2022. (PA Wire/Handout via Xinhua)

LONDON, Sept. 20 (Xinhua) -- Chinese President Xi Jinping's Special Representative Vice President Wang Qishan has attended the funeral of Queen Elizabeth II, at the invitation of the British government.

On Sunday afternoon, Wang paid tribute to the Queen lying in state at Westminster Hall. On Monday morning, he attended the state funeral for the Queen held at Westminster Abbey, together with heads of state from various countries, members of the royal family and government representatives.

Wang told the British side that at a time when Britain is in national grief following the Queen's death, Xi appointed him as the Chinese president's special representative to attend the funeral in London.

This fully demonstrates the goodwill of the Chinese president, government and people for the British royal family, government and people, Wang said.

As Britain's longest-reigning monarch, Queen Elizabeth II witnessed the changes of the times and was a symbol of British national spirit and cohesion, said Wang, adding that the Queen was deeply loved by the British people and had made important contributions to the development of China-Britain relations.

He conveyed to King Charles III the mourning for the late Queen from Xi, the Chinese government and people, and extended sincere condolences to the British royal family, government and people.

King Charles III conveyed a message to the Chinese side, thanking and welcoming Wang's attendance at the Queen's funeral as the special representative of Xi.

He said that the British royal family cherishes the friendship with Chinese leaders very much, attaches importance to the development of Britain-China relations, and hopes to continue to cooperate with China in sustainable development and other fields in the future.

On behalf of the British government, British Deputy Prime Minister Therese Coffey thanked Wang for making a special trip to attend the Queen's funeral, noting that the Queen always attached importance to Britain-China relations.

The work of the new British government is underway, and the government hopes to further strengthen cooperation with China in such areas as economy and trade, environmental protection, climate change and multilateral affairs, Coffey said. ■