Ukraine leads world reaction to King Charles III’s coronation

Ukraine released an upbeat video to congratulate Britain’s King Charles III and Queen Camilla during their historic coronation ceremony at Westminster Abbey on Saturday, where world leaders gathered to witness the once-in-a-generation royal event.

The video released by Ukraine’s defence ministry was edited to the tune of London Calling by The Clash, and showed British weaponry deployed to the Ukrainian frontline and Ukrainian president Volodymyr Zelensky meeting King Charles and British prime minister Rishi Sunak, Labour leader Keir Starmer and former prime minister Boris Johnson.

"On the eve of the historic coronation, we’d like to thank our British friends for your friendship. We are grateful for your unwavering support and partnership, especially in the past year!" the defence ministry said on Twitter.

First lady of Ukraine Olena Zelensky and prime minister Denys Shmyhal are already in London this week to celebrate the coronation of King Charles.

Charles, who became King after the death of his mother Queen Elizabeth II in September last year, has now taken the coronation oath, becoming the first monarch to pray aloud in front of a coronation congregation.

The King asked that his reign “be a blessing” to people “of every faith and conviction” in his prayer.

The King and the Queen were crowned in front of a 2,200-strong congregation including world leaders and dignitaries, with US first lady Jill Biden, Chinese vice president Han Zheng, Canada’s Justin Trudeau, French president Emmanuel Macron and many others among them.

China’s president Xi Jinping sent a congratulatory message to King Charles and Queen Camilla to mark their coronation, according to Chinese state media.

Mr Xi told Charles that China is willing to expand cooperation and cultural exchanges with the UK and that the two countries should "jointly promote peace and cooperation".

His comments reflect Mr Xi’s efforts in recent months to present himself as a potential peace-broker in the ongoing Ukraine conflict. Mr Xi claims China to be neutral in regards to the war, despite enjoying a much closer working relationship with Russia’s Vladimir Putin.

US president Joe Biden, who did not attend the coronation, congratulated Charles through a tweet, calling it a historic occasion.

“Congratulations to King Charles III and Queen Camilla on their coronation. The enduring friendship between the US and the UK is a source of strength for both our peoples. I am proud the first lady is representing the United States for this historic occasion,” he said.

Australian prime minister Anthony Albanese, who is in Britain to attend the coronation, shared a number of pictures from London including a post on Friday night showing “preparations in full swing in London this evening at Buckingham Palace”.

European Commission president Ursula von der Leyen, who was received by the King at Windsor Castle, said it was a “heart-warming” occasion.

“It is an honour to be in London to meet King Charles III on the eve of his Coronation. Heart-warming to see so many nations gathering together in celebration today!” she said.

“The EU counts on the unwavering friendship with the United Kingdom and its new King.”

On Saturday, King Charles became the 40th sovereign to be crowned at Westminster Abbey, the nation’s coronation church since 1066.

Archbishop of Canterbury Justin Welby placed St Edward’s Crown on his head, a historic moment watched around the globe.