Coronation this weekend will boost Thai king's regal power

After a more than a decade of political strife, including a military coup and a contentious election less than two months ago, the people of Thailand are witnessing this weekend the coronation of King Maha Vajiralongkorn in a centuries-old royal tradition that last happened seven decades ago.

The coronation represents a renewal of the monarchy's power after the October 2016 death of Vajiralongkorn's revered father, King Bhumibol Adulyadej.

The 66-year-old Vajiralongkorn has served as king since then. But to be fully and formally invested with regal power and to ensure his legitimacy, he will be consecrated in an elaborate series of ancient rites that culminate in three days of elaborate pageantry. It includes a parade and an appearance by the monarch on a balcony of the Grand Palace in Bangkok.