Declining Buckingham Palace banquet invite: Corbyn’s choice

One of the star speakers at yesterday’s anti-Trump demonstrations in London was the leader of Britain’s Labour Party, Jeremy Corbyn, who — faithful to his 30-year career as a protestor — declined an invitation to attend the Buckingham Palace banquet normally held for state visits.

In her extraordinarily long reign, Queen Elizabeth has welcomed many heads of state, most of whom have been leaders that right-minded people would be glad to have in for a cup of tea.

But in her role she must do what an elected government requests, which means she’s had to entertain butchers and dictators such as Zimbabwe’s Robert Mugabe, Romania’s Nicolae Ceauescu, China’s Xi Jinping, and Russia’s Vladimir Putin. However offensive Donald Trump’s opinions are to liberals, he cannot — yet — be placed in such a league.

Mr Corbyn visited Yasser Arafat in 2002 when the Palestinian leader was busy organising terror attacks in Israel, and he was present in Tunis in 2014 at a ceremony to honour terrorists. “I was present at that wreath-laying,” he explained. “I don’t think I was actually involved in it.”

Perhaps he could have gone to that state banquet, in a present-but-not-actually-involved kind of way?

More on this topic

Call for inquiry after £2.4m of taxpayer cash spent on Harry and Meghan’s home

Woman in serious condition after collision with William and Kate’s convoy

Prince Louis makes Buckingham Palace balcony debut at Trooping the Colour

Paris wants a 'Princess Diana Square' at site where she died

More in this Section

Donohoe pulled in two directions as he seeks to regain prudent reputation

Unanswered questions in Garda sick cert case

Boris’s boyhood dream may yet become Britain’s nightmare

G20 environment plan laudable but will be too little too late


Hozier adds more believers to his church after Cork gig

Simply off the wall: Your go-to guide to shelving

Peter Dowdall shares his top 4 flower picks to add a splash of summer colour to your garden

Ask a counsellor: ‘Why does my husband hate that our daughter’s dating a man going through divorce?’

More From The Irish Examiner