Buckingham Palace did not invite President Joe Biden to assemble a delegation to attend the funeral of Queen Elizabeth II next week, and instead extended a specific invitation for only the President and first lady, a White House official told CNN.
The White House announced that Biden had formally accepted the invitation and would be accompanied by the first lady.
Previous state funerals, such as the one for former South African president Nelson Mandela, have allowed for the sitting president to bring a delegation of officials to the event.
CNN reported that Joe Biden was facing a dilemma over whether to invite Donald Trump to join him in the funeral.
According to the network, Mr Trump’s attendance was in his successor’s hands.
The logistics of having to decide whether Mr Trump would join him in crossing the Atlantic on Air Force One would be problematic for Mr Biden, given that his predecessor still refuses to accept the result of the 2020 election.
The state funeral for the Queen will take place on September 19 at Westminster Abbey, and she will lie in state in Westminster Hall from Wednesday, Buckingham Palace announced Saturday.
Both George W Bush and Bill Clinton attended the funeral of Pope John Paul II in April 2005.
Barack Obama invited Mr Bush, Mr Clinton and Jimmy Carter to accompany him to Nelson Mandela’s funeral in Dec 2013.
Photo – Visitors walk beneath United States national flags flying at half-staff at the base of the Washington Monument by proclamation of US President Joe Biden, to honor the late Queen Elizabeth II of Britain following her death, in Washington, DC, USA. EPA-EFE/MICHAEL REYNOLDS