The son of King Norodom Suramarit and Queen Sisowath Kossamak, Sihanouk held so many positions since 1941 that the Guinness Book of World Records identifies him as the politician who has served the world's greatest variety of political offices. These included two terms as king, two as sovereign prince, one as president, two as prime minister, as well as numerous positions as leader of various governments-in-exile. He served as puppet head of state for the Khmer Rouge government in 1975–1976.
Most of these positions were only honorific, including the last position as constitutional king of Cambodia. Sihanouk's actual period of effective rule over Cambodia was from 9 November 1953, when France granted independence to Cambodia, until 18 March 1970, when General Lon Nol and the National Assembly deposed Sihanouk.
Sihanouk died after a heart attack in Beijing, China on 15 October 2012, aged 89. He had been receiving medical treatment there since January for a number of health problems, including colon cancer, diabetes, and hypertension. State flags flew at half-mast, and current King Norodom Sihamoni and Prime Minister Hun Sen went to Beijing to bring home Sihanouk's body for a funeral at the Royal Palace.
Prince Sisowath Thomico, who was Sihanouk's assistant and nephew, said "his death was a great loss to Cambodia," adding that Sihanouk had dedicated his life "for the sake of his entire nation, country and for the Cambodian people."United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon also commented, acknowledging Sihanouk's "long dedication to his country and his legacy as a unifying national leader who is revered by Cambodians and respected internationally." After Sihanouk's death, the National Television of Kampuchea repeatedly screened a 30-minute documentary about his life. 100,000 Cambodians are expected to line the route from the airport to the Royal Palace for the return of Sihanouk's body, but the reaction was largely muted because of a holiday.
Credited : wikipedia