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Governments and heads of state from all over the world came to London today to bid farewell to Queen Elizabeth. Among the mourners were several leaders from Commonwealth countries, such as President Suluhu of Tanzania, Prime Minister Trudeau of Canada and President Ruto of Kenya.

But within the confederacy, which mainly consists of former colonies, not everyone is mourning the death of the Queen, who was seen as a symbol of colonialism and slavery.

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India

A notable absentee from London today was Indian Prime Minister Modi. It is true that shortly after Elizabeth’s death he conveyed his condolences to the royal family and announced a day of national mourning, but earlier he lashed out at British colonialism.

Indian President Murmu did come to London for the funeral, but her role in India is ceremonial in nature. The funeral was also not shown on the main Indian television broadcasters.

India was already independent when Elizabeth took the throne in 1953. Shortly afterwards, she was ousted as the country’s head of state – an example that Barbados followed last year.

Indians look at a funeral registration in an electronics store in Bangalore:

EPA/JAGADEESH NV

Jamaica

Several countries in the Caribbean have strongly hinted that they are planning the same, including Belize and Antigua and Barbuda. Today was considered a day of national mourning in Jamaica, but the former colony is not exactly royalist. The country makes no secret of its desire to become a republic.

During a visit by heir William to the throne last March, Prime Minister Holness indicated that Jamaica and the United Kingdom had “unresolved” matters to deal with. He referred, among other things, to reparations.

King Charles with Prime Minister Holness at Buckingham Palace. The two met shortly after Elizabeth’s passing:

AFP

King Charles with Prime Minister Holness shortly after Elizabeth’s death

Kenya

Elizabeth maintained better ties with a number of African countries. In Kenya, for example, the funeral could be seen on television today. Four days of national mourning were also established in the country.

Kenya was the country where Princess Elizabeth was on a royal tour in 1952 when she was told she was becoming queen: her father George VI had died in England.

The history of the British royal family is inextricably linked to the brutal colonial rule that the English conducted in Kenya. In the African country, some 1.5 million residents were sent to detention camps during the 1950s in an attempt by the British to fight the Mau Mau independence movement.

The latter sentiment has been heard a lot online lately. While the leaders in Kenya mainly praised Elizabeth, there was criticism on social media of the British colonial legacy.

South Africa

Like Kenya, Elizabeth also visited South Africa several times. She maintained a friendly relationship with the first democratically elected President Nelson Mandela.

But a petition was recently launched in the country calling on the British royal family to return the Cullinan. This largest uncut diamond in the world was found at the beginning of the last century in South Africa, then a British colony. Parts of the diamond were incorporated into the crown jewels, which today played a prominent role in the funeral.

While African leaders have all neatly conveyed condolences, a different sound was heard at a souvenir market in the center of Cape Town:

‘I don’t mourn Queen Elizabeth’

Australia and New Zealand

The funeral was widely followed in two other Commonwealth states, Australia and New Zealand. For example, there were screens in public and in pubs to follow the ceremonies live.

Yet there are also critical voices in Australia, New Zealand and Canada, for example among the native population. For example, many Aboriginal people do not mourn Elizabeth’s death.

There is also a growing group of people who say that with the arrival of Elizabeth’s successor Charles it is time to become a republic. Leading Republicans, such as Australian Prime Minister Albanian, now say they want to show respect to the Queen and only want to talk about a republic after the mourning period.

In Sydney, the funeral could be followed in pubs:

EPA

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