Queen attends U.K. cabinet meeting for first time
Queen Elizabeth II, centre, is accompanied by Britain's Prime Minister David Cameron, centre back, as she is presented to Cabinet members at 10 Downing Street in London on Tuesday, Dec. 18, 2012. (AP Photo/Jeremy Selwyn, Pool)
The Associated Press
Published Tuesday, December 18, 2012 7:08AM EST
Last Updated Tuesday, December 18, 2012 8:12AM EST
LONDON -- Queen Elizabeth II sat in on a Cabinet meeting for the first time on Tuesday, taking a seat between British Prime Minister David Cameron and Foreign Secretary William Hague to observe the weekly discussion of government business.
Her visit is believed to be the first time a sitting monarch has attended a Cabinet meeting in at least 100 years.
Cabinet members presented her with a gift of 60 placemats in honour of her Diamond Jubilee.
The government said the queen attended Tuesday's meeting as an observer -- not as a contributor -- in honour of her 60 years on the throne. But her visit has raised some eyebrows for appearing to blur the traditional line between government and monarchy.
As head of state, the queen performs some ceremonial and formal duties related to government but must remain neutral on political matters.