Live news updates: Tributes flow worldwide following death of Queen Elizabeth II

Kana Inagaki in Tokyo, Kathrin Hille in Taipei, Maiqi Ding in Beijing, Christian Davies in Seoul and William Langley in Hong Kong

Leaders of east and south-east Asian countries have praised Queen Elizabeth II as the “backbone of global democracy” and the “soul of the UK”, as tributes for the former monarch pour in from around the region.

Fumio Kishida, Japan’s prime minister, said he was “deeply saddened” by the Queen’s death, noting that Britain’s longest-serving monarch “had played a significant role for world peace and prosperity”. 

“The passing of Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II, who has led Britain through a tumultuous global period, is not just a major loss for the citizens of the UK but for the international community,” Kishida told reporters on Friday.

Kishida added the Queen had contributed to the strengthening of ties between Britain and Japan, which is home to the world’s oldest continuous monarchy.

Taiwan’s president Tsai Ing-wen extended her “deepest condolences to the British government the people of the Commonwealth, HM King Charles III and the Royal family”, her office said.

Tsai praised the Queen as a “backbone of global democracy”, noting she had led the British people during the second world war and more recently against the face of global authoritarianism.

“Taiwan and the United Kingdom are united in their gratitude for the Queen’s life-long contribution to world peace and prosperity,” Tsai said.

Singapore’s prime minister Lee Hsien-loong called the Queen “the very heart and soul of the UK”.

“On behalf of the Singapore government, I extend my deepest condolences,” he added.

South Korean president Yoon Suk-yeol sent his “deepest condolences to the people of the United Kingdom”.

“[The Queen] had a strong belief in the cause of human freedom and left great legacies of dignity. Her kind heart and good deeds will remain in our memories.”


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