Thai parliament plans session over royal proclamation

Bangkok, Nov 25 (IANS) The Thai parliament will meet here on Tuesday — for the first time since the death of King Bhumibol Adulyadej last month — to take up a special motion that may lead to proclamation of the country’s new king.

Parliament Vice-President Peerasak Porjit said on Friday that he does not yet have details of the content of the measure that the government will present to the legislature, the authority responsible for inviting the future monarch to the throne, Xinhua news agency reported.

The session will be preceded by a special government meeting.

The Thai parliament, handpicked by the military junta and in power since 2014, has been in recess since October 13, when it held an extraordinary session hours after the King’s death and adjourned without proclaiming the country’s new king.

Military junta head and Prime Minister Prayut Chan-o-cha had said the proclamation was postponed due to Crown Prince Vajiralongkorn’s wish to spend some time mourning his father’s death before succeeding him to the throne.

Authorities soon announced that the coronation ceremony of the heir will not be held until after Bhumibol’s cremation, expected to be carried out within a year, although the proclamation may take place before that.

Bhumibol is the only king that most Thais have known, elevating him almost to a divine status and a symbol of national unity.

Vajiralongkorn, appointed Crown Prince in 1972, has lived much of his life abroad, disconnected from the responsibilities of the throne and does not enjoy the popularity of his father.

–IANS

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