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Turbulent Thailand

Thailand king cancels ceremonies as COVID surges

Late vaccines and reeling economy weigh heavy on the kingdom

Thailand's King Maha Vajiralongkorn, accompanied by Queen Suthida, presided over the Royal Ploughing Ceremony in front of the Grand Palace in Bangkok the last time it was held on May 9, 2019.    © Reuters

BANGKOK -- Thailand's King Maha Vajiralongkorn was unable to mark the second anniversary of his coronation on May 4 after a letter from the king's private secretary on April 27 instructed that the ceremony would again be canceled because of the COVID-19 pandemic, which has surged alarmingly in recent months.

After successfully keeping the pandemic at bay in 2020, as of May 4, Thailand has 72,118 confirmed cases and 303 deaths. Unconfirmed infections are expected to be higher.

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