Saudi women have a long road ahead

Saudi women have a long road ahead

Last year, the country's de facto leader, Crown Prince Mohammad bin Salman, laid out a bold vision to reshape the conservative Islamic society.

Saudi Arabia's royalty still have far to go to liberate women from the so-called guardian system, a tribal tradition in which male relatives control numerous activities of women.

It would also be short-sighted to allow this victory to obscure the fact that Saudi Arabia needs its women driving - and, more specifically, working.

Twenty-four hours after King Salman issued a decree end the ban, the government announced that a woman had been appointed as assistant mayor of Al Khubar governorate.

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"My vehicle is still there, the one I drove".

Buti said that's not the case in neighboring Saudi Arabia.

In the meantime president's daughter, Ivanka, has congratulated Saudi Arabian women after king Salman issued an order allowing them to get behind the wheel. The male guardianship system requires women to have a male relative's approval for decisions on education, employment, marriage, travel plans and even medical treatment. Saudi officials and clerics have provided numerous explanations for the ban over the years. According to the World Economic Forum, which conducts the ranking, the Saudi labor market "is segmented among different population groups, and women remain largely excluded".

The announcement on Tuesday follows decades of resistance from female activists, many of whom were jailed for flouting the ban. Hush money also comes in the form of subsidized jobs, which in turn allow men to afford to restrict the movement of women: About 1.4 million foreigners are now employed as household drivers. "We also need to see a whole range of discriminatory laws and practices swept away".

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There was some opposition online, however, with some men criticising the decision on Twitter under the slogan "the people refuse women driving". That women are being allowed to help support themselves right now is awfully convenient - part of careful manoeuvring by the House of Saud, which wants to ease the country toward private employment while managing the demands for social change that will bring.

"Whoever says this is permitted is a sinner".

To all the men making jokes about women driving, I remind you: Saudi has one of the highest auto accident rates, and only men drive. "Evil has come to Arabs".

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