Former king and leader of Cambodia, Norodom Sihanouk was crowned in 1941. He further consolidated his power in the 1950s before he was toppled by a US-backed coup in 1970 and was exiled to Beijing. He later returned and supported the Khmer Rouge but was eventually put under house arrest by the communist regime. Sihanouk regained the throne in 1993. In 2004, he abdicated due to illness and left the throne to his son. On October 15, 2012, Sihanouk died of a heart attack at age 89 in Beijing.
Cambodian king in Beijing to bring back Sihanouk
Cambodian King Norodom Sihamoni and Prime Minister Hun Sen arrived in Beijing to bring home the body of former king Norodom Sihanouk who died earlier on Monday, Chinese state television reported.
Their entourage, which included three Buddhist monks, planned to visit Sihanouk’s central Beijing residence and then the hospital where the former king died, China Central Television reported.
No other details about the arrangements to bring Sihanouk’s body back to Cambodia were released. Phone calls to the Cambodian embassy in Beijing went unanswered.
The revered and charismatic Sihanouk, whose life encompassed turbulent years of rule, exile and war including the Khmer Rouge reign of terror, died at the age of 89.
Sihanouk had been a frequent visitor to China, where he received most of his medical treatment for a range of health problems. He died of a heart attack, according to his longtime personal assistant Prince Sisowath Thomico.