KUALA LUMPUR, Malaysia (AP) — Malaysia’s Sultan Abdullah Sultan Ahmad Shah has called for racial unity as he was formally installed as the country’s 16th king under a unique rotating monarchy system.
It was a double celebration for Sultan Abdullah, who turned 59 on Tuesday. He was picked as Malaysia’s new ruler in January, after Sultan Muhammad V abruptly resigned after just two years on the throne in the first abdication in the nation’s history.
Nine ethnic Malay state rulers take turns as king for five-year terms under the world’s only such system, which has been maintained since Malaysia’s independence from Britain in 1957.
Sultan Abdullah in his coronation speech warned that any attempt to incite racial conflict was akin to “playing with fire that can burn down the whole village.”