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Saudi Arabia to Allow Women to Drive by 2018

Saudi Arabia to Allow Women to Drive by 2018

King Salman of Saudi Arabia issued on Tuesday a royal decree allowing women to drive.

This marks the end of a longstanding repressing policy against women in the kingdom, the only country that doesn’t allow women to drive.

Women will not be allowed to drive immediately. The change, announced on state television, will come into force on June 24, 2018.

According to the statement, traffic laws would be amended to allow the government to issue driver’s licenses to men and women alike.

A high-level ministerial committee has 30 days to provide recommendations for the change to take place.

Rights groups have long campaigned for the ban to be overturned, and some women have been arrested and jailed for defying the ban.

In 2014, Activist Loujain al-Hathloul was arrested when she tried to drive into Saudi Arabia from the neighboring United Arab Emirates (UAE).

Saudi Arabia is a conservative Islamic kingdom; it enforces a state policy of gender segregation between men and women who are not related.

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