KUALA LUMPUR: Malaysia's newest king ascended the throne on Thursday (Jan 31), marking the start of a five-year term.
Sultan Abdullah arrived to a state welcome at the Parliament Square, and was met by Prime Minister Mahathir Mohamad and Deputy Prime Minister Wan Azizah Wan Ismail.
The central band of the Royal Malay Regiment played the national anthem. Subsequently, the Royal Standard of the king was hoisted and a 21-gun salute was fired.
Sultan Abdullah then inspected the main guard-of-honour from the 1st Battalion Royal Malay Regiment.
He later proceeded to Istana Negara to take the oath of office.
At the same ceremony, the Sultan of Perak, Sultan Nazrin Shah, took the oath of office as deputy king.
Earlier at midnight, the official flag of the king was raised at the palace in Kuala Lumpur.
Sultan Abdullah, 59, succeeds Sultan Muhammad V from Kelantan, who stepped down after just two years on the throne, a first in the country's history.
The former has a reputation of being well-versed in state affairs and is known as a humble and gracious figure.
He was appointed crown prince in July 1976, when he was just 16 years old, and took over his father's duties for the first time when he was 20 years old, when former sultan Ahmad Shah served as Malaysian king from 1979 to 1984.
He also studied Foreign Affairs and Diplomacy at Queen Elizabeth College, Oxford University, and was also trained at the Royal Military Academy Sandhurst.
In Malaysia's constitutional monarchy system, the election for the Yang di-Pertuan Agong is held on a rotational basis every five years.
The Conference of Rulers must meet to elect a new king no later than four weeks once the position of the Yang di-Pertuan Agong falls vacant.