Saudi Prince Says Women Should Be Allowed To Drive

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A prominent prince from the Saudi royal family has said that women should be allowed to drive.

Saudi Arabia is the only country which bans women from driving, but on November 30, Prince Alwaleed bin Talal used Twitter to tell his 5.4 million followers “Stop the debate. Time for women to drive.”

Shortly after this Tweet, the office of Prince Alwaleed released a four-page statement outlining the various reasons why women should be permitted to drive in the country.

In the statement, Alwaleed says “Preventing a woman from driving a car is today an issue of rights similar to the one that forbade her from receiving an education or having an independent identity.”

The statement also expressed the importance of women being able to drive for economic, developmental and social reasons. He said “[Women have to] remain dependent on foreign drivers, an alternative that exacts a cost from the family’s income, or else continue to take cabs, which are also costly, and driven by foreign drivers,” considered by many Muslims as a violation of Sharia law.

reports that billions of dollars is drained from the Saudi economy due to the extensive use of foreign drivers.

Although Prince Alwaleed doesn’t hold any political office in the country, he does have significant interests in many national and international corporations.