Royals from Japan to Jordan to attend Swedish royal wedding

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Royals from around the world, from Jordan's King Abdullah to Japan's heir to the throne and a slew of Scandinavian majesties, would attend the wedding of Swedish Crown Princess Victoria this weekend, the palace said Thursday.

Monarchs Beatrix of the Netherlands, Margrethe II of Denmark, Harald V of Norway and Albert II of Belgium were among the guests set to attend when 32-year-old Victoria ties the knot on Saturday with longtime boyfriend and former gym partner Daniel Westling, 36.

The Grand Duke of Luxembourg and Prince Albert of Monaco will also join the festivities in Stockholm, where streets are already awash with Swedish flags and the media is abuzz with wedding fever.

Neither Britain's Queen Elizabeth nor Prince Charles were however expected, and the British royals would instead be represented by Prince Edward, according to the official guest list.

Many non-reigning European royals -- appearing on the guest list with royal titles -- include King Constantine of Greece, Bulgaria's King Simeon and Crown Prince Alkexander of Former Yugoslavia.

Amid the crowd of royals, only two heads of state from republics will attend: Finnish President Tarja Halonen and Icelandic President Olafur Grimsson.

The ambassadors of North Korea, Iran and Zimbabwe, will also attend the Saturday celebration at Stockholm's Cathedral, the official list showed, drawing media criticism.

That the charge d'affaires from Eritrea figures on the list also fuelled outrage, with a leftist opposition politician calling it "deeply distasteful" to invite a representative of a dictatorship that has held a Swedish-Eritrean journalist, Dawit Isaak, without charge since 2001.

All of the ministers in the Swedish government including Prime Minister Fredrik Reinfeldt, are set to attend, as well as opposition leader Mona Sahlin.

In fact, only one Swedish party head refused to turn up: republican Lars Ohly, head of the Left Party, who wished the pair all the best but decided to stay at home since he "did not know the couple" and was opposed to the monarchy as an institution.

The young chief executive of Swedish clothing empire H&M, Karl Johan Persson, also a close friend of Victoria and Daniels, will attend, as will Jacob and Marcus of the billionaire Wallenberg industrial family.

© 2010 AFP

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