BANGKOK – The final stage of the funeral ceremony for Thailand’s late King Bhumibol Adulyadej has taken place in Bangkok.
The king’s ashes were enshrined in two royal temples and Thailand’s Grand Palace, where he had lain in state since he died aged 88 last October.
On Thursday, hundreds of thousands of people lined the streets to pay their last respects to King Bhumibol, who reigned for more than 70 years.
A year-long mourning period ended at midnight (17:00 GMT) on Sunday.
It means mourners will now be able to replace their black clothes with more subdued colours, such as brown and blue. Black and white decorations on government offices and homes can also be removed.
The elaborate five-day funeral officially started on Wednesday with a merit-making ceremony, a Buddhist rite, in the Grand Palace in Bangkok.
On Thursday, the late king was cremated on a royal pyre lit by his son, King Maha Vajiralongkorn, after a procession marked by drums, flute music and an artillery salute.
In the final ceremonies, King Vajiralongkorn selected some of his father’s ashes to be enshrined in the Grand Palace.
The late king was seen as a stabilising figure in a country hit by cycles of political turmoil and multiple coups.
Preparations for this week’s events took almost a year and included setting up the large cremation complex near the palace.
The funeral site features sculptures of mythical creatures and auspicious animals such as lions and elephants. -BBC