Cambodians last week mourned King Norodom Sihanouk, who died in China while seeking medical treatment since January. The 89-year-old former monarch held many roles in government and was king on more than one occasion, starting in 1941. He gave up the throne to his son, Norodom Sihamoni, in 2004. Sihanouk led the country through its independence from France in 1953 and was connected to much turmoil in the country over the last 50 years. A crowd estimated at 200,000 lined the streets in Phnom Penh today to welcome home the body, which will lie in state for three months before being cremated according to Buddhist ritual
Cambodian people watch as workers install a portrait of the late former king Norodom Sihanouk in front of the Royal Palace in Phnom Penh on Oct. 16. Grieving Cambodians wore black ribbons and flags flew at half-mast on Oct. 16 as the nation mourned the death of revered ex-king Norodom Sihanouk and prepared for the return of his body from China.
A woman throws water on burning incense sticks outside the Royal Palace as people pray to honor former King Norodom Sihanouk on Oct. 16 in Phnom Penh, Cambodia. King Norodom Sihanouk died of a heart attack in Beijing at the age of 89.
A woman cries as she mourns the death of the late former Cambodian King Norodom Sihanouk in front of the Royal Palace in Phnom Penh Oct. 16. Norodom Sihanouk, once an absolute ruler who freed Cambodia from colonialism before becoming a tragic pawn through decades of turmoil, died on Monday in a Beijing hospital.
People light incense sticks as they mourn the death of former King Norodom Sihanouk at the Royal Palace in Phnom Penh, Cambodia, on Oct. 16. Sihanouk, a cunning political survivor who reinvented himself repeatedly throughout his often flamboyant life, died Monday at age 89 of a heart attack in Beijing, where he had been receiving medical treatment since January for multiple ailments.
People gather to mourn the late former Cambodian King Norodom Sihanouk in front of the Royal Palace in Phnom Penh on Oct. 15.
The Royal Palace is lit up and displays a portrait of former King Norodom Sihanouk on Oct. 16
People wearing white pray as they mourn the late former Cambodian King Norodom Sihanouk in front of the Royal Palace in Phnom Penh on Oct. 15.
A portrait of King Norodom Sihanouk is embedded among flower offerings by mourners of his death at the Royal Palace in Phnom Penh, Cambodia, on Oct. 16.