Thais gather to celebrate King Bhumibol Adulyadej's 87th birthday despite news that he canceled a public appearance on advice of doctors. Rough Cut (no reporter narration).
ROUGH CUT (NO REPORTER NARRATION) STORY: People in Bangkok gathered on Friday evening (December 5) to celebrate King Bhumibol Adulyadej's 87th birthday after he canceled a public appearance on the advice of doctors. Thousands of well-wishers gathered at a park opposite the Grand Palace for celebrations presided over by Thai Prime Minister Prayuth Chan-ocha, which included fireworks. The cancellation fueled concern over the health of King Bhumibol, who is regarded as almost divine by many Thais and is widely seen as a unifying figure through years of political unrest. It also comes at a sensitive time, six months after the army took over in a coup and amid a corruption investigation that has led to the arrest of relatives of Princess Srirasmi, the wife of the crown prince. The king's birthday is also known as "Father's Day" in Thailand and is a holiday.