Prince Charles to be next head of Commonwealth

Casey Dawson
April 21, 2018

The queen's expression of her wish and Prime Minister Theresa May's remarks thanking her for her contribution over the decades reflected acarefully choreographed move toappoint Prince Charles with the agreement of the leaders of the 53 countries. As Elizabeth mentioned, her father, King George VI, became leader upon the Commonwealth's formation in 1949 and filled that role until his death at 1952, at which point Elizabeth took over. Prince Charles was confirmed as the next head of the Commonwealth on Friday.

Succession to her role in the Commonwealth, which is not hereditary, is said to be one of the topics for discussion at this year's biennial gathering as it is expected to be the last the Queen will attend.

Prince Charles welcomed the guests saying that the modern Commonwealth had a role to play in building bridges between member states creating "fairer societies within them and a more secure world around them".

However, Philip Murphy, director of the University of London's Institute of Commonwealth Studies, said Charles' political passions could hold peril for the Commonwealth.

The leaders of the Commonwealth countries then discussed whether they would accept Prince Charles as Commonwealth head behind closed doors at Buckingham Palace.

Britain laid on a lavish royal welcome for Commonwealth leaders, including a banquet at Buckingham Palace, the use of Windsor Castle for meetings and the deployment of royal glamour couple Prince Harry and Meghan Markle to a series of events.

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Addressing what is most likely her last Chogm summit - she no longer flies long distances and it is not due to return to the United Kingdom for some years - the monarch said: "It is my honest wish that the Commonwealth will continue to offer stability and continuity for future generations, and will decide that one day the Prince of Wales should carry on the important work started by my father in 1949". "Our consensus-based approach flows from our belief in the equality of all nations", the Commonwealth leaders maintained.

"We have also listened most attentively to the young people of the Commonwealth".

Britain's Prince Charles greets Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern and her partner Clarke Gayford.

The Queen said the advantages of the network were plain to see, with an increasing emphasis on trade among Commonwealth countries and joint initiatives bringing about change on a global scale. Nearly 2.5 billion people inhabit the Commonwealth nations, almost 1/3rd of the earth's population. Former Portuguese colony Mozambique is also a Commonwealth member, and Togo is considering joining.

He continued, "By doing so, the Commonwealth can be a cornerstone for the lives of future generations, just as it has been for so many of us".

But many Commonwealth nations have been plagued by corruption or destabilized by coups.

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