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International royals

Queen Sirikit returns home from hospital

The Grand Palace in Bangkok, Thailand, sent out a statement on 29 November stating that the dowager Queen had been released from the King Chulalongkorn Memorial Hospital after being treated for a fever and a lung infection.

Queen Sirikit returned to her home at the Chitralada Royal Villa on Tuesday, which was one of her official residences that she shared with her late husband, King Bhumibol Adulyadej.

The Queen’s doctors urged her to go home after the fever abated and her health improved. She was released amidst the news that the Thai cabinet and legislature had formally invited her son, Crown Prince Vajiralongkorn, to become the next King.

Crown Prince Vajiralongkorn, will succeed his beloved father on the throne at an unspecified date. It is expected that, since the cabinet and legislature have extended the invitation, Crown Prince Vajiralongkorn will grant a royal audience within the next little while.

Former Prime Minister Prem Tinsulanonda is currently acting as regent until Crown Prince Vajiralongkorn accepts.

Queen Sirikit has experienced periods of ill health in the past, including suffering from an ischemic stroke in 2012. Her husband was suffering from ill health for a prolonged period before his death in October of this year.

King Bhumibol Adulyadej died on 13 October at the age of 88, after a 70-year reign that made him the longest-serving head of state and the longest-reigning monarch in Thai history.

Queen Sirikit acted as regent on her husband’s behalf in 1956, when he spent time as a Buddhist monk.

The 30 days of immediate mourning following his passing ended just before his wife entered the hospital, although Thailand is expected to stay in a period of mourning for their much-admired king.

In a shocking twist, Crown Prince Vajiralongkorn requested that his succession be delayed to allow for what was described by the Prime Minister as “…time to prepare before being proclaimed as the new king.”

About author

Jess Ilse is the Assistant Editor at Royal Central. She specialises in the British, Danish, Norwegian and Swedish Royal Families and has been following royalty since Queen Elizabeth II’s Golden Jubilee. Jess has provided commentary for media outlets in Canada, the United States, the United Kingdom, and Australia. Jess works in communications and her debut novel THE MAJESTIC SISTERS will publish in Fall 2024.