Prime Minister Anthony Albanese, Governor General David Hurley, their partners and 10 ordinary Australians are about to start a trip to the UK for the Queen’s funeral.
Joining other world leaders who were due to travel to the UK capital for the commemorations, Mr Albanese will pay tribute to the late monarch at several official functions.
Australia provides travel assistance to officials and Heads of State of Commonwealth countries in the Pacific Islands, including Papua New Guinea, Solomon Islands, Tuvalu and Samoa.
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While in London, Mr Albanese is expected to see the Queen in state at Westminster Hall and sign the official book of condolences.
Alongside his counterparts from other Commonwealth countries, the Prime Minister will also meet the King at Buckingham Palace.
A statement from Government House said the Governor-General and Ms Hurley spoke by telephone with the King on Wednesday evening and expressed the condolences of Australians over the Queen’s passing.
“He expressed the wishes of the Australian people to the King and His Majesty expressed his admiration and affection for the Australian people,” the statement read.
Australian of the Year Dylan Alcott and racehorse trainer Chris Waller are among the group of 10 representatives traveling with the Prime Minister.
On Wednesday, it was confirmed that 40 Australian defense personnel would also attend the funeral, including a number walking in the cortege.
The Queen held a number of defense titles including Colonel-in-Chief of the Royal Australian Engineers, Royal Australian Infantry, Royal Australian Army Ordnance Corps and Royal Australian Army Nursing Corps.
Meanwhile, more than 21,000 Australians have signed an online book of condolences on the Prime Minister’s and Cabinet Office website.
Physical books are also available for signature at Parliament and Government House in Canberra as well as official residences in other states and territories.
When the Prime Minister returns to Australia next week, a day of mourning will mark the life and service of the late monarch.
A national memorial service in Canberra will bring together all state and territory leaders.
© APA 2022