Ahead of his official coronation on Saturday the King of Thailand, Maha Vajiralongkorn, has married his bodyguard and made her queen.
The new queen, Suthida Tidjai, a 40-year-old former flight attendant, was the deputy commander of the King’s bodyguard unit.
According to a royal statement issued on Wednesday, the king “has decided to promote General Suthida Vajiralongkorn Na Ayudhya, his royal consort, to become Queen Suthida and she will hold royal title and status as part of the royal family.”
King Vajiralongkorn also known by the title King Rama X, took over as the top royal in 2016, when his father, King Bhumibol Adulyadej, passed away after 70 years on the throne, but the coronation is on Saturday. No reason was given for why the elaborate Buddhist and Brahmin coronation is coming three years later.
The 66-year-old king, who has been married and divorced three times, made her deputy commander of his bodyguard unit in 2014 when he was still crown prince. In 2016, she was made a full general. In 2017, she was made deputy commander of the personal guard.