Britain’s Boris Johnson hails ‘rock’ Queen Elizabeth ahead of platinum jubilee

Britain’s Queen Elizabeth and Prime Minister Boris Johnson greet guests during a reception for the Global Investment Summit at Windsor Castle, Windsor, Britain October 19, 2021. Alastair Grant/Pool via REUTERS

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LONDON, May 25 (Reuters) – British Prime Minister Boris Johnson will pay tribute to Queen Elizabeth on Thursday ahead of four days of celebrations next week to honor her 70 years on the throne, describing her as the rock of the nation.

Elizabeth, 96, marked seven decades on the throne in February, and national events to commemorate her platinum jubilee, including a service of thanksgiving and a music concert outside Buckingham Palace, will take place from 2 to June 5.

In parliament on Thursday, politicians will pay their respects to the Queen in a “humble speech”, with the debate opened by Johnson.

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“Today we honor a head of state whose length of service and devotion to duty are simply unparalleled,” Johnson will say according to excerpts released by his office.

“The only monarch most of us in this country have ever known and the rock to which our nation and our people have been anchored through all that the last 70 years have thrown at us.”

Elizabeth became Queen of the United Kingdom and more than a dozen other kingdoms, including Canada, Australia and New Zealand, on the death of her father, King George VI, on February 6, 1952. , while in Kenya for an international tour.

Johnson will say that the people of the United Kingdom and the Commonwealth of Nations, the group of 54 countries which the Queen also leads, would be shameless in celebrating not the institution but the individual who wore the crown.

“This remarkable woman who, by God and by her right, led her country through good times and bad,” he said. “Who has dedicated his life to his people, to his beloved Commonwealth, to the very idea of ​​what a constitutional monarchy can and should be.”

The four days of celebrations begin next Thursday with the traditional ‘Trooping the Colour’ military parade through central London, and will also include a service at St Paul’s Cathedral in London on Friday, a concert outside Buckingham Palace the following day and a show across the British capital on Sunday.

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Reporting by Michael Holden; edited by Jonathan Oatis

Our standards: The Thomson Reuters Trust Principles.

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Edward L. Robinett