PHNOM PENH - Five years on from King Norodom Sihanouk's intricately-scripted departure from the political stage, Cambodia's new monarch Norodom Sihamoni is quietly and finally emerging from his father's shadow.
Enthroned by French colonial authorities in 1941, Sihanouk grew into a national symbol and wily political operator, entrenching himself at the center of the country's political life through his Sangkum Reastr Niyum, or People's Socialist Community, which ruled from 1955 to 1969. Unpredictable to the last, the often tempestuous monarch announced his surprise abdication on October 7, 2004, ending an era that spanned six decades and countless political and royal titles.
The monarchy was officially re-established under Sihanouk in 1993 as part of a United Nations-sponsored peace process and the country has since been governed as a constitutional monarchy. However, Sihamoni, Sihanouk's son and hand-picked successor, was always going to find it hard to live up to Sihanouk's colorful and often controversial legacy.
Iran activist sentenced to death for election protests
The first death sentence has been passed against a defendant accused of involvement in the mass protests in Iran against President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad's disputed re-election, prompting fears of a wave of executions against opposition activists.
A revolutionary court in Tehran handed the penalty to Mohammad Reza Ali-Zamani, 37, after convicting him of muhabereh – taking up arms against Iran's Islamic system.
The sentence was imposed after he confessed to working for a little-known exile group, the Iran Monarchy Committee, which Iranian officials describe as a terrorist organisation. Prosecutors alleged that he plotted political assassinations with US military officials in Iraq before returning to Iran "aiming at causing disruption during and after the election".
Mujib killers were told that Bangladesh to be monarchy
Dhaka, Oct 7 (IANS) Mutineers who killed Bangladesh’s founding father Sheikh Mujibur Rahman in 1975 were provoked by an army officer with a ’story’ that their country was about to be declared a ‘monarchy’, which would be subservient to neighbouring India, the Supreme Court has been told.
A bench of the apex court, which resumed after many years the murder trial and appeals by some of those convicted and sentenced to death, was told that Lt. Col. Syed Farooq Rahman had made a confession about this before a magistrate. Rahman was later dismissed from the army.
The former officer said that Aug 14, 1975, he “had excited his colleagues, saying that the president would proclaim monarchy in the country on Aug 15, the democracy will be damaged and the country will go under the possession of India and therefore they should depose the government of Sheikh Mujib,” The Daily Star reported Wednesday.