King Charles III was due Saturday to meet leaders from his new Commonwealth realms ahead of his mother’s ornate funeral, after a security scare interrupted her sombre lying-in-state.
Princes William and Harry were later set to lead a vigil of Queen Elizabeth II’s eight grandchildren at her coffin, joining tens of thousands of members of the public who have been queuing round the clock for days.
Those inside parliament’s Westminster Hall for the lying-in-state received a shock late on Friday when a man burst out of the line and approached the coffin, which sits topped with the Imperial State Crown.
A live television feed of the mourners briefly cut away around 10:00 pm (2100 GMT) as police detained the man, two hours after Charles and his three siblings had held their own vigil in the cavernous hall.
“He was arrested for an offence under the Public Order Act and is currently in custody,” London’s Metropolitan Police said.
The queen’s death on September 8, aged 96, after a record-breaking 70 years on the throne, has sparked an outpouring of emotion.
Members of the public are braving waits that have stretched to more than 25 hours, and chilly night-time temperatures, to view her flag-shrouded coffin.
Lines have snaked for miles along the River Thames since Wednesday when her coffin was brought to the UK parliament complex.