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Saturday, October 15, 2016
POWER GRAB IN THAILAND? EX-PM PREM MADE REGENT WHILE CROWN PRINCE ‘MOURNS’
Thailand has appointed the 96-year old head of the powerful Privy Council as temporary regent, while the country’s heir to the throne mourns the death of his father.
Deputy Prime Minister Wissanu Krea-ngam confirmed the appointment on Friday evening.
Thailand has begun a year of mourning, after the death of the widely-revered King Bhumibol Adulyadej, who was the world’s longest reigning monarch.
According to Thailand’s constitution, the named heir should ascend the throne upon the king’s death.
The National Legislative Assembly met on Thursday, after the king died, and was expected to submit the heir’s name for acknowledgment.
But Crown Prince Maha Vajiralongkorn reportedly asked for time to mourn his father.
In the meantime, retired military officer and former Prime Minister Prem Tinsulanonda will be temporary regent.
However, the Thai Government has stressed that Prince Vajiralongkorn will still take the throne.
In a sombre procession, King Bhumipol’s body was taken from Siriraj Hospital to the Grand Palace on Friday, as thousands of Thais lined the streets, wearing black.
Mohd. Kamal bin Abdullah
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