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Thai Crown Prince Vajiralongkorn to be proclaimed the new king

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Bangkok: The Thai parliament at a special session on Tuesday said Crown Prince Maha Vajiralongkorn will become the king of Thailand, and hailed “long live the new king”.

Pornpetch Wichitcholchai, President of the National Legislative Assembly, said the late King Bhumibol Adulyadej had designated Vajiralongkorn, 64, as his heir apparent in 1972, Xinhua news agency reported.

Parliament at its special session invited the Crown Prince to be proclaimed as the new king.

At the end of the session, all members of parliament stood up and hailed together “long live the new king”.

Deeply-revered Adulyadej died on October 13 at the age of 88 after years of illness.

The Crown Prince still needs to accept the invitation in order for him to be formally proclaimed as the king, according to established procedure.

Thai Deputy Prime Minister Prawit Wongsuwan said, “We expect an audience (with the Prince) within the next one to two days.”

Once proclaimed king, the Crown Prince would become King Rama X, or the 10th king of the Chakri dynasty founded in 1782, though his formal coronation will not happen before his father’s royal cremation later next year.

For the royal cremation, a funeral pyre is to be built soon, said the government.

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