Queen Elizabeth II Attend the Day 4 of the Royal Windsor Horse Show on May 11, 2013 in Windsor, England.
Queen Elizabeth’s visit to Iran in 1961.
Although Queen Elizabeth only visited Iran once, she described Iran as one of the most cultural, historical, and royal country’s she had ever visited. Her majesty was so impressed by Iranian culture and history that she had requested to visit Iran once more in 1979. Many festivities were held in Queen Elizabeth’s honor while she was visiting Iran.
Queen Elizabeth and Camilla Duchess of Cornwall attend Windsor Horse Show, May 10, 2013.
The Queen and Prince William after Prince Andrew and Sarah’s wedding 23 July 1986
Liz as a grandma
The Imperial State Crown is carried on a cushion as it arrives for the State Opening of Parliament at the Houses of Parliament on May 8, 2013 in London, England.
Queen Elizabeth II attends the State Opening of Parliament on May 8, 2013 in London, England.
Queen’s Speech 2013
A fresh attempt to curb immigration is the centre piece the government’s planned new laws, set out by the Queen at the state opening of Parliament.
Access to the NHS will be tightened, landlords forced to check immigration status and illegal migrants prevented from obtaining driving licences.
But alcohol pricing and monitoring web use were not among the 15 bills.
The Prince of Wales, joined by his wife the Duchess of Cornwall, attended for the first time since 1996.
The speech took place the day after it was announced Prince Charles would represent the monarch at the Commonwealth heads of government summit in Sri Lanka in November.
Setting out the government’s legislative programme for the year ahead, in a speech written for her by ministers, the Queen said its “first priority” remains strengthening Britain’s economy and it would “continue to prioritise measures that reduce the deficit”.
“It will also work to promote a fairer society that rewards people who work hard,” added Her Majesty.
She said an Immigration Bill will aim to “ensure that this country attracts people who will contribute and deter those who will not”.
If passed, the bill would also ensure illegal immigrants cannot get driving licences, and change the rules so private landlords have to check their tenants’ immigration status.
It would also allow foreign criminals to be deported more easily, as well as people who are in the UK illegally, after the government’s repeated setbacks in its efforts to deport the radical cleric Abu Qatada.
Businesses caught employing illegal foreign labour would face bigger fines.
Migrants’ access to the NHS would be restricted and temporary visitors would have to “make a contribution” to costs.
The planned immigration crackdown follows a surge in support for UKIP, which campaigns for a reduction in net migration, but the government insists the measures had been decided before last week’s local election results.
Other measures announced in the Queen’s Speech include:
- Exempting employers from the first £2,000 of their National Insurance payments in an effort to support jobs and help small businesses
- A bill paving the way for the second tier of funding for High Speed 2 rail line and another to give government the power to compulsorily purchase land
- Tightening up consumer protection to make it easier to claim refunds
- A cap on social care costs in England, as recommended by the Dilnot Commission, although there is no indication of what level it will be set at
- Millions of people caring for elderly and disabled relatives in England will be given the right to receive support from their local councils
- A Pensions Bill will introduce a single-tier pension, worth around £144 a week at today’s prices, and will bring forward to 2026 the date at which the retirement age rises to 67
- Tougher controls on dangerous dogs and a new “community trigger” to ensure action is taken on persistent anti-social behaviour
Ofsted-style ratings for hospitals and care homes will be introduced and a new chief inspector of hospitals given more powers, in response to the Mid-Staffordshire health scandal.
Another bill would increase supervision and drug testing of offenders after release from jails in England and Wales and open up the probation service to private competition in an effort to cut re-offending rates.
There was also no place in the Queen’s Speech for proposals to introduce plain packaging for cigarettes or legislation on minimum alcohol pricing, although Health Secretary Jeremy Hunt has insisted both plans are still under consideration.
Demands by some Conservative MPs for legislation paving the way for a referendum on Britain’s membership of the EU were ignored - as were calls from charities to enshrine in law David Cameron’s pledge to spend 0.7% of national income on foreign aid.
The Queen’s Speech had also been due to include a communications data bill, dubbed a “snooper’s charter” by opponents, which would have allowed the monitoring UK citizens’ online and mobile communications.
But the plans were blocked by Deputy Prime Minister Nick Clegg on civil liberties grounds, despite warnings the legislation was needed to help detect terror plots.
The government is now considering forcing internet service providers and mobile phone companies to store more data about the devices from which emails, Skype calls and other messages are sent to help police identify the sender, if necessary.
The Home Office had previously rejected this option, which may not need new legislation to implement, on technical and cost grounds.
For Labour, Shadow home secretary Yvette Cooper said: “The immigration measures in the Queen’s Speech don’t tackle important issues on exploitation and illegal immigration.
“The government is still not tackling the exploitation of foreign workers leading to the undercutting of local workers.
“Immigration is important for Britain and needs to be controlled and managed so it is fair for all.”