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Published: Friday December 6, 2013 MYT 12:00:00 AM
Updated: Friday December 6, 2013 MYT 8:42:40 AM

Bhumibol still the guiding light for kingdom

Street party: Well-wishers cheering for King Bhumibol at Klai Kangwon Palace, about 200km south-west of Bangkok. — EPA

Street party: Well-wishers cheering for King Bhumibol at Klai Kangwon Palace, about 200km south-west of Bangkok. — EPA

TO mark his 86th birthday anniversary, King Bhumibol Adulyadej granted a grand public audience at his Klai Kangwon Palace in Prachuap Khiri Khan for the first time.

A huge number of the much-revered monarch’s well-wishers crowded the streets to express their continued deep loyalty to him.

This year, Thais’ overwhelming respect for His Majesty has caught the world’s spotlight, as even the serious confrontations between anti-government demonstrators and the Yingluck Shinawatra-led administration have come to a halt especially for this important occasion.

Both sides have organised events to honour the much-beloved King.

The king, accompanied by Queen Sirikit, made a public appearance at the Rajapracha Samakhom Pavilion of Klai Kangwon Palace yesterday.

Crown Prince Maha Vajiralongkorn, Prime Minister Yingluck, Parliament president Somsak Kiatsuranont, the supreme commander, and the chiefs of the armed forces were present to express their well wishes.

Nattakan Sittikham, a Nonthaburi resident, had staked her claim to a space on the footpath as early as Wednesday morning.

“I came here to honour my much-beloved King. I love him so much because he is so devoted to his country and his people,” said the 60-year-old woman.

Pattarin Obchoey, 44, said that she, her family members and friends travelled from as far away as Nakhon Pathom because they wanted to express their loyalty to the King.

“We came early because we were worried that all the space would be quickly occupied,” she said. — The Nation / Asia News Network

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