Saudi Prince: let women drive

Saudi Prince: let women drive

A prominent Saudi prince and business magnate Alwaleed bin Talal has added his voice to the debate over women’s rights in his country, urging it to abandon its driving ban for women.

“Stop the debate. It’s time for women to drive,” the prince wrote on his Twitter page.

In a four-page letter posted on his personal website, he argued that “it is high time that Saudi women started driving their cars”.

Prince Alwaleed wrote that the ban could not be defended under religious law. “Such a ban on driving is fundamentally an infringement on a woman’s rights, particularly as it continues to exist after she had won her right to an education and a salaried employment,” the New York Times cited him as saying.

Ending the ban would allow the kingdom to eventually “dispense with” the services of an estimated one million drivers and would stimulate the economy by allowing women to work by driving other women who did not feel comfortable behind the wheel.