Britain's Queen Elizabeth II returns to public duties after Prince Philip's funeral

Monarch accepts credentials of new ambassadors from Ivory Coast and Latvia

LONDON, ENGLAND - APRIL 27: Queen Elizabeth II appears on a screen by videolink from Windsor Castle, where she is in residence, during a virtual audience to receive Her Excellency Ivita Burmistre, the Ambassador of Latvia at Buckingham Palace on April 27, 2021 in London, England. (Photo by Yui Mok - Pool/Getty Images)

Queen Elizabeth II on Tuesday held her first video meetings since the funeral of her late husband, Prince Philip, returning to royal duties as she formally accepted the credentials of new ambassadors from the Ivory Coast and Latvia.

The queen, 95, held the audiences from Windsor Castle, where she has lived during the Covid-19 pandemic, while the envoys were 32 kilometres away at Buckingham Palace in London.

Elizabeth, who ended a two-week period of mourning on Friday, wore a floral dress and pearls for the occasion.

Videos from the events were the first released for public view since Philip’s funeral on April 17 at St George’s Chapel in Windsor.

Strict social distancing rules forced the queen to sit alone during the service, a spectacle that touched many who had suffered loss in the pandemic.

The week before the funeral, the queen attended the retirement of her Lord Chamberlain, who organises all ceremonial events for the palace, and welcomed his replacement. Neither event was photographed.

Elizabeth celebrated her birthday last week, using the occasion to express her gratitude for all the well-wishers who offered tributes to Philip, her husband of 73 years.

The royal family was in a “period of great sadness”, but drew comfort from words of praise for the Duke of Edinburgh, she said.

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