Thailand's People Asked to Avoid 'Joyful' Events

All TV broadcasts switched to black and white in wake of king's death
By Rob Quinn,  Newser Staff
Posted Oct 14, 2016 3:00 AM CDT
Thailand Declares Year of Mourning
Thai people stand in line to offer condolences for Thai King Bhumibol Adulyadej at the Grand Palace in Bangkok, Thailand, on Friday.   (Gemunu Amarasinghe)

Thailand has declared a full year of mourning for King Bhumibol Adulyadej, who was the world's longest-reigning monarch before his death on Thursday at the age of 88. The AP reports that a public holiday was declared Friday, the country's first day without a king in 70 years, though the stock market and banks remained open. Prime Minister Prayuth Chan-ocha, the former army chief who led 2014's military coup, said Crown Prince Maha Vajiralongkorn is set to succeed Bhumibol, but he has asked for more time to mourn.

The Bangkok Post reports that soon after the beloved king's death was announced on Thursday, broadcasting on all television channels, including international news networks like CNN, was replaced with black-and-white footage of the king. Authorities say television broadcasts will be restricted for the next 30 days. Movie screenings, concerts, and sporting events have also been canceled for the next month and the public has been asked to wear black and avoid "joyful events," the BBC reports. (More Thailand stories.)

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