In a rare intervention into the workings of the Commonwealth, the Queen has urged Commonwealth leaders to name her son, Prince Charles, to succeed her as head of the organization.
“It is my sincere wish that the Commonwealth will continue to offer stability and continuity for future generations, and will decide that one day the Prince of Wales should carry on the important work started by my father in 1949,” the Queen said as she opened the Commonwealth Heads of Government summit at Buckingham Palace on Thursday.
The Queen was named head of the Commonwealth when she became monarch in 1952, taking over the title from her father, King George VI. But the ceremonial role is not hereditary and it’s up to Commonwealth leaders to decide who will replace her. The Queen turns 92 on Saturday and this is expected to be the last time she attends the biennial gathering of Commonwealth leaders since she no longer travels outside Britain. There has been some controversy about whether Prince Charles would take over when, as expected, he becomes king. Some British politicians have been skeptical about his leadership, saying it’s time for a younger and more dynamic leader. However, now that the Queen has stated her preference, it’s unlikely anyone else will be chosen.