King-Father Samdech Preah Norodom Sihanouk Passes Away

AKP Phnom Penh, October 15, 2012 – 

Samdech Preah Norodom Sihanouk, the King-Father of Cambodia, passed away in the early morning of Oct. 15 in Beijing, China at 01:20 am (local time in Phnom Penh), according to a press release from the Press and Quick Reaction Unit of the Council of Ministers.  

Samdech Preah Norodom Sihanouk who had suffered from a number of ailments in recent years died at the age of 90. 

The Royal Government of Cambodia will bring King-Father’s body back to Cambodia for the royal traditional funeral, the press release said. 

Samdech Preah Norodom Sihanouk was born on Oct. 31, 1922. He was the only son of HRH Prince Norodom Suramarit and HRH Princess Sisowath Kossomak Nearirath Serey Vatthana. 

Samdech Preah Norodom Sihanouk became the King of the Kingdom of Cambodia in April 1941. He led Cambodia for the full independence from France in 1953. 

In 1955, Samdech Preah Norodom Sihanouk abdicated to his father and founded the Sangkum Reastr Niyum (SRN), a country development movement. It won a great victory in the legislative election. At that time, Samdech Preah Norodom Sihanouk became the prime minister of Cambodia, and head of state of Cambodia in 1960 after the death of his father.  

On Mar. 18, 1970 during the official visit to the USSR, Samdech Preah Norodom Sihanouk was ousted from the power by a Coup d’Etat. Then he became the President of the Cambodian resistance (FUNK). 

In April 1975, Samdech Preah Norodom Sihanouk became head of state of Democratic Kampuchea (Khmer Rouge regime), but he resigned in 1976. 

From the fall of the Democratic Kampuchea in Jan. 7, 1979  to 1990, Samdech Preah Norodom Sihanouk stayed out of the country and returned back in 1991 and became the King of Cambodia in 1993 until he abdicated in October 2004. 

After the abdication, he often stayed in China for his medical treatment until he passed away. 

By KHAN Sophirom

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