Royal Drama: A Consort Is Stripped of Her Titles

Thailand's king says Sineenat Bilaskalayani was acting like a queen
By John Johnson,  Newser Staff
Posted Oct 21, 2019 10:05 AM CDT
Royal Drama: A Consort Is Stripped of Her Titles
This undated photo posted Aug. 26, 2019, shows Sineenat Wongvajirabhakdi. She has been stripped of her title as royal consort.   (Thailand Royal Office via AP)

Some serious drama is unfolding in Thailand's royal palace: The new king has just demoted and publicly castigated a young woman on whom he had bestowed the coveted ranking of royal consort. Sineenat Bilaskalayani, also known as Sineenat Wongvajirapakdi, was apparently acting too much like a queen, reports Bloomberg. And Thailand already has one of those. The background: King Maha Vajiralongkorn was crowned in May, and days before his coronation he announced a surprise wedding to Suthida Vajiralongkorn, now 41. Thus, Thailand had a new king and queen. Then in July, the 67-year-old king made the rare move of bestowing the title of royal consort—such a designation hadn't been made in a century—on Sineenat.

It's not clear what the 34-year-old Sineenat's royal duties were, but things clearly didn't go well. "Sineenat's behavior disrespected the monarchy, caused conflict among royal household officials, and created misunderstanding among the public," says a royal statement. Essentially, she's accused of being too "ambitious" and of attempting to "elevate herself to the same state as the queen," says the announcement, per the BBC. Sineenat is a pilot and nurse who served in the king's bodyguard unit and achieved the rank of major-general, notes the Guardian. However, she has now been stripped of her military ranks as well. (More Thailand stories.)

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