World leaders welcome Saudi move of letting women drive

Yemen News Agency (SABA

Some said that it was inappropriate in Saudi culture for women to drive, or that male drivers would not know how to handle having women in cars next to them. "We have fought on this issue for decades and each time we were told it wasn't the right time".

Lori Boghardt, a Gulf specialist at the Washington Institute for Near East Policy, said the change is yet another sign that the Crown Prince is intent on adopting social reforms that will transform the Kingdom. If Saudi women are now able to drive, certainly here in the United States we would certainly welcome that. "An important step in the right direction".

US President Donald Trump has commended the decision of Saudi Arabia to allow women to drive in the ultra-conservative kingdom, describing it as a "positive step".

Beyond the effects it could have on Saudi Arabia's image overseas, letting women drive could help the Saudi economy.

It's worth noting that Saudi women face a wide array of laws under the male guardianship system that controls many aspects of their lives.

An order from King Salman instructed the Interior Ministry to give "licences to women and men equally".

The driving ban has been a topic of heated debate, with conservative citizens arguing that the Islamic prohibition against men and women mingling in public included women drivers. "#SaudiArabia", Ivanka, who has 4.62 million followers, posted on Twitter.

"Last night's announcement signifies a major step towards women's economic advancement in Saudi Arabia. But I believe that they're imprisoned in their old ways and their old mindset or they just fear freedom", she says, adding that she has received death threats because of her campaign.

In the past few years, the Kingdom has incrementally granted women more rights and visibility, including participation in the Olympic Games in London and Rio, positions on the country's top consultative council and the right to run and vote in local elections in 2015.

Speaking on his LBC show, Maajid said: "There are problems with men and access rights in this country, there are problems in the divorce law, there are problems with the case of the student in Oxford who stabbed her boyfriend".

Saudi Arabia, home to Islam's holiest sites, is a Muslim monarchy ruled according to Shariah law. In a separate statement, the government said many senior religious leaders found no, quote, "impediment" in letting women drive.

Saudi Arabia's Royal Court announced that decision to publish, n women will be allowed to drive a driver's license announced.

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