Thailand's King Strips His Consort of Royal Titles for 'Misbehavior and Disloyalty'

Stephanie Petit

Thailand’s king has stripped his royal noble consort of her titles and military ranks, accusing her of seeking to undermine the position of his official wife.

The palace said that 34-year-old Sineenat Wongvajirabhakdi “showed her objection and exerted pressure in every way to stop Her Majesty the Queen’s installation and to get herself installed instead as she had wished,” according to Channel News Asia. “However, things did not turn out the way she had wished for. After the royal ceremony, with aspiration and ambition, she tried to find ways to get herself bestowed her title.”

In May, King Maha Vajiralongkorn named his longtime partner Suthida Vajiralongkorn Na Ayudhya as queen when they were married a few days before his formal coronation. Two months later, the 67-year-old king made the rare move of bestowing the title of royal consort — the first such designation made in nearly a century, according to the BBC — on Sineenat.

“The king gave her a royal consort position, in hopes of relieving the pressure and a problem that could affect the monarchy,” the announcement said, reports the BBC.

Sineenat had her title of consort and military ranks removed due to her “misbehavior and disloyalty against the monarch.”

King Maha Vajiralongkorn and Queen Suthida | ROYAL HOUSEHOLD BUREAU HANDOUT/EPA-EFE/REX/Shutterstock

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King Maha, 67, announced that surprise news that he had married his consort, General Suthida Vajiralongkorn Na Ayudhya, and named her Queen Suthida, shortly before his coronation this summer.

The announcement was reportedly made in the Royal Gazette, although it did not give a date of the wedding. Thai television stations broadcast the royal order along with a video of Suthida, wearing a pale pink dress, laying before the king and presenting him with a tray of flowers and joss sticks, AP reports. Suthida, 41, was presented gifts in return.

The couple also signed a marriage certificate book, also signed by the king’s sister, Princess Sirindhorn, and Privy Council head as witnesses. Prime Minister Prayuth Chan-ocha and other senior officials were also in attendance at the ceremony.

The Thai monarch, also known by the title King Rama X, has had three previous marriages. He divorced his most recent wife in 2014.

King Maha Vajiralongkorn and Queen Suthida | Bureau of the Royal Household/AP/Shutterstock
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Little is known about Thailand’s new queen. The couple reportedly met on a flight when she was working as a flight flight attendant for Thai Airways International.

In 2013, Suthida joined the palace guard. King Maha then appointed Suthida as a deputy commander of his bodyguard unit. He made Suthida a full general in December 2016 after he became king, and the deputy commander of the king’s personal guard in 2017. He also made her a Thanpuying, a royal title meaning Lady.