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Saudi Arabia to allow women to drive in landmark move.

Summary: Saudi Arabia's King Salman Tuesday ordered that women be allowed to drive cars for the first time in the kingdom, state media said.

RIYADH: Saudi Arabia's King Salman Tuesday ordered that women be allowed to drive cars for the first time in the kingdom, state media said. Saudi Arabia was the only country in the world that banned women from driving, despite ambitious government targets to increase their public role, especially in the workforce.

The Saudi envoy to the U.S. said that women won't need a guardian in the car while driving, nor will they need to get permission from legal guardians to get a driver's license.

The royal decree ordered the formation of a ministerial body to give advice within 30 days and then implement the order by June 2018, according to state news agency SPA.

It stipulated that the move must "apply and adhere to the necessary Shariah standards," without providing details, and said a majority of the Council of Senior Religious Scholars had approved its permissibility.

The kingdom has been opening more areas for women through the government's modernizing reforms, which have sparked tensions with influential preachers upon whose support the ruling family relies.

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Publication:The Daily Star (Beirut, Lebanon)
Geographic Code:7SAUD
Date:Sep 27, 2017
Words:215
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