PHNOM PENH, Cambodia (AP) — Thousands of mourners have accompanied a gilded chariot carrying the body of former King Norodom Sihanouk in a funeral procession through the streets of the capital to a cremation ground.
The cremation on Monday will end seven days of mourning for the king who was the dominant figure of modern Cambodia. Sihanouk led the country to independence from the French, initially kept it out of the Vietnam War and survived the Khmer Rouge reign of terror.
Cambodians still highly revere their former monarch and many wept as the funeral procession passed Friday. It was watched by an estimated half a million people.
Among the mourners was Sihanouk’s son, King Norodom Sihamoni, a constitutional monarch with little power.
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