LONDON, Feb 6 — Queen Elizabeth II, now aged 90, clocked up 65 years on the British throne today. Here is a list of the world’s longest-reigning national monarchs:
BRITAIN: Queen Elizabeth II, born on April 21, 1926, inherited the throne on February 6, 1952 following the demise of her father, king George VI. She became the world’s longest-reigning monarch upon the death of Thai king Bhumibol Adulyadej in October 2016. Her 65-year record also applies to Australia, Canada and New Zealand and she is queen of 12 other Commonwealth countries.
BRUNEI: Sultan Hassanal Bolkiah, 70, is one of the richest people on the planet. Bolkiah has reigned for 49 years over the small enclave on the north coast of Borneo since his father abdicated on October 4, 1967. He has 12 children from three wives.
OMAN: Sultan Qaboos, 76, took the throne 46 years ago on July 23, 1970 after ousting his father for allegedly being too conservative. The absolute monarch has set about reforming the small sultanate, which with Iran controls the strategic Strait of Hormuz, but his health is failing and he has no publicly-designated heir. Since 2014, he has been hospitalised several times in Germany.
DENMARK: Queen Margrethe II, 76, became head of Europe’s oldest kingdom 45 years ago on January 14, 1972 following the death of her father, king Frederik IX. A chain smoker and an accomplished painter, she has two sons and eight grandchildren.
SWEDEN: King Carl XVI Gustaf, 70, has been on the throne for 43 years, having succeeded his grandfather, Gustaf VI Adolf, on September 15, 1973. He is known internationally for presenting the Nobel Prizes. He and Queen Margrethe are first cousins.
Next on the list are King Mswati III of Swaziland (30 years), Emperor Akihito of Japan (28 years), Prince Hans-Adam II of Liechtenstein (27 years), King Harald V of Norway (26 years) and King Letsie III of Lesotho (20 years). — AFP