Tuesday, September 18, 2007

They just want to drive...

Saudi women rely on relatives or chauffeurs to drive them around

I read this story from the BBC.
"A group of women in Saudi Arabia is for the first time to lobby the kingdom's government for the right to drive cars....Correspondents say the demand is likely to be rejected, as conservatives argue if women are allowed to drive, they will be able to mix freely with men....The issue of women driving has recently become the subject of public debate...Two years ago, a member of the Consultative Council sparked a heated debate when he pointed out there was nothing under Islamic law or the constitution that justified the ban, and that the council ought to discuss ways of lifting it.
Mohammed al-Zulfa's comments later prompted the Saudi interior minister to dismiss calls for the ban to be lifted, saying the country had other priorities.
The current driving ban applies to all women in Saudi Arabia, whatever their nationality. It was originally unofficial, but became law after an incident in 1990, when 47 women challenged the authorities by taking their families' cars out for a drive.
After strong criticism from the Saudi religious authorities, the women were jailed for one day, their passports confiscated and many lost their jobs... A founding member of the Committee of Demanders of Women's Right to Drive Cars, Fawzia al-Oyouni, said",This is a right that has been delayed for too long." "
So what do you think? It's time for parts of the world to move past the Middle Ages.

1 comment:

Pickled Eel said...

Thanks for dropping by. Great site by the way. Love that art in the previous post.
You might enjoy the following article about Saudi women and cars.
http://pickledeel.blogspot.com/2007/08/girls-of-riyadh.html
And there are some other Saudi experiences there you might enjoy. I actually like the Kingdom but it has some bizarre things to sort out - like the role of women. And Starbucks opening hours :-)