- Title: "No one dares to criticise" say Thais, after King strips royal consort of titles
- Date: 22nd October 2019
- Summary: BANGKOK, THAILAND (OCTOBER 22, 2019) (REUTERS) EXTERIOR OF GRAND PALACE WITH PORTRAIT OF KING MAHA VAJIRALONGKORN IN FRONT VARIOUS OF KING'S PORTRAIT BEING DISPLAYED AT A TRAFFIC JUNCTION VARIOUS OF BANGKOK RESIDENT, TATPONG LAVANLATTANAKUK, LOOKING AT HIS PHONE (SOUNDBITE) (Thai) BANGKOK RESIDENT, TATPONG LAVANLATTANAKUK, SAYING: "Right now the king can do anything he wants, we (people) can't predict what's going to happen. The best we can do is acknowledge the situation and talk about it only online whether it is on Facebook or Twitter. But no one dares to criticise in public." TATPONG SPEAKING TO JOURNALIST (SOUNDBITE) (Thai) BANGKOK RESIDENT, TATPONG LAVANLATTANAKUK, SAYING: "I think most people are used to these kind of things, so people look at it with dark humour to be able to live with it." STUDENT, KANTANOP LIKITSOMBOON SPEAKING (SOUNDBITE) (Thai) STUDENT, KANTANOP LIKITSOMBOON, SAYING: "I feel like he (the king) can do whatever he wants because he is also a human being. It is not people's jobs to be judgmental about what he can or cannot do." KING'S PORTRAIT BEING DISPLAYED ON TOP OF BUILDING PORTRAIT OF LATE KING BHUMIBOL ADULYADEJ (LEFT) AND CURRENT KING MAHA VAJIRALONGKORN (RIGHT) BEING DISPLAYED ON TOP OF BUILDINGS PIER BEING DECORATED WITH KING'S PORTRAIT AND TEXT (Thai): 'LONG LIVE THE KING'
- Embargoed: 5th November 2019 05:02
- Keywords: Thailand King King Maha Vajiralongkorn Monarchy Royal Consort
- Location: BANGKOK, THAILAND
- City: BANGKOK, THAILAND
- Country: Thailand
- Topics: Arts / Culture / Entertainment,Royals
- Reuters ID: LVA001B26FUX3
- Aspect Ratio: 16:9
- Story Text:Thai residents were not openly critical of the latest move by King Maha Vajiralongkorn who stripped his recently-appointed consort of her titles, but pointed out on Tuesday (October 22) that few would do so, with the country's strict lese majeste laws.
On Monday (October 21), the king stripped 34-year-old consort Sineenat Wongvajirapakdi of her titles in a palace order, calling her "disloyal", "ungrateful" and "ambitious". All images of her have disappeared from the palace website and her personal Instagram account was shut down overnight.
It was not immediately clear exactly what prompted the dismissal of Sineenat, whose whereabouts on Tuesday were not known. Thailand's strict lese majeste laws forbid criticising the king or his family, with insults punishable by up to 15 years in prison.
Monday's palace statement hinted that the downfall involved a rivalry with Queen Suthida, 41, whom the thrice-divorced king married on May 1 just days before his coronation ceremonies began. "She is also not content with the title bestowed upon her, doing everything to rise to the level of the queen," the statement said.
(Production: Artorn Pookasook, Jiraporn Kuhakan, Travis Teo)
- Copyright Holder: REUTERS
- Copyright Notice: (c) Copyright Thomson Reuters 2019. Open For Restrictions - http://about.reuters.com/fulllegal.asp
- Usage Terms/Restrictions: None