Saudi Arabia will allow women to drive for the first time in a landmark decision. So far, Saudi Arabia was the only nation in the world to curb women from driving. The Muslim-dominated ultra-conservative kingdom had attracted global criticism for years for detaining women who defied the ban.
Reportedly, an order was issued for both men and women to be issued drivers’ licenses and a new committee will be created to execute it. Since the 1990s, women’s rights activists have been demanding for the right to drive in the name of equality under the rule of law.
According to new Saudi ambassador to Washington Prince Khaled bin Salman, the move is a “huge step forward” for his country. The ambassador, however, cleared that the decision to let women drive wasn’t enforced at the request of the US.
In the meantime, US President Donald Trump appreciated Saudi Arabia’s decision to allow women to drive. A statement from the White House press secretary’s office says Trump viewed the change as “a positive step toward promoting the rights and opportunities of women in Saudi Arabia”.