Malaysia will appoint a new king by the end of this month, after Sultan Muhammad V of Kelantan stepped down on Sunday just two years into his five-year reign.
The 16th king will be decided by a ballot among the nine Malay rulers. Though only a constitutional monarch, the king is seen as a symbol of Malay power and protector of Islam, the state religion.
Sultan Muhammad's abdication followed growing discomfort among some of the other Malay sultans over the damage the royal institution had suffered recently.
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