Thai King dies after a record 70-year rule

Bangkok: Thailand’s King Bhumibol Adulyadej died on Thursday after prolonged illness. According to a Royal Palace statement, he died at Siriraj Hospital in Bangkok. But it did not give details of his death.

He became king soon after World War II and continued to rule Thailand until his death at the age of 88. His rule lasted a record 70 years. Thailand was once known as Siam with which ancient India had close relations, particularly in art and culture.

King Bhumibol was revered and respected by Thais. He was seen as a unifying force in a country that is often rocked by coups. In the latest one, the military seized power two years ago. Though the King’s successor is Crown Prince Vajiralongkorn, the jet-set royal member doesn’t command respect as much as his father had.

With King Bhumibol’s death, British Queen Elizabeth II has become the longest surviving monarch, having been on the throne for 64 years.

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