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Thailand's new king turning 65 without public appearance

King Maha Vajiralongkorn has made institutional changes in his first 10 months

Monks collect alms early on the morning of King Maha Vajiralongkorn's 65th birthday at Royal Plaza in Bangkok, July 28. (Photo by Nozomu Ogawa)

BANGKOK -- As King Maha Vajiralongkorn Bodindradebayavarangkun turns 65 on Friday, his first birthday since his accession in October, celebrations are being restrained by the year-long official mourning period for his revered father, King Bhumibol Adulyadej.

In keeping with the former reign, Buddhist monks gathered alms early in the morning at large merit-making ceremonies led by Prime Minister Prayuth Chano-cha and other senior officials, but the new king is not due to make an appearance.

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