Tillerson lauds ‘humanitarian, visionary’ HM late King Bhumibol
US Secretary of State Rex Tillerson has praised His Majesty the late King Bhumibol Adulyadej as a true humanitarian, visionary and friend of the United States.
In a statement issued on Friday (local time in Washington DC), Tillerson said his thoughts are with the people of Thailand as they witness the Royal Cremation Ceremony.
President Donald Trump sent a presidential delegation led by Secretary of Defence James Mattis, who is on a tour of Asia this week, to join the Royal Cremation Ceremony on Thursday.
Tillerson visited Thailand in August and paid his respects to the late King during his visit.
“As I expressed during my recent visit to Bangkok, I join Americans throughout the United States in extending our deepest respect to His Late Majesty. From communities along the Pacific in California to those marking this occasion at King Bhumibol Square near the Late King’s birthplace in Massachusetts, we remember a leader who shaped the course of history and strengthened the bonds of friendship that unite us,” he said in the statement.
“Next year we will celebrate the bicentennial of the first official contact between our two great nations. His Late Majesty championed our strong, enduring friendship throughout his reign. His commitment to our alliance helped ensure regional security and created the conditions for Thailand’s miraculous economic development,” he said.
“Building on His Late Majesty's legacy, I am confident this alliance will thrive in a new century, to the continued benefit of the Thai and American people.