‘Shariah does not bar women from driving’


Al-Mutlaq, speaking to Okaz newspaper, said that the study he was currently carrying out on the issue was motivated by a wish to tackle problems associated with foreign drivers being responsible for transporting Saudi females.

Al-Mutlaq said the move would serve to “prevent corruption” and noted “many negative observations concerning drivers.”

Al-Mutlaq said women should be allowed to drive, and cited the fact that many already do in rural areas with no resultant problems.

“They have earned respect with their abidance of traffic laws,” he said.
Al-Mutlaq called upon youth to respect women driving and expressed a wish for the issue to be treated as “normal”.

Al-Mutlaq’s comments support those expressed by Islamic thinker and former Minister of Information Dr. Mohammed Abdo Yamani, who told Al-Watan newspaper on Wednesday that women should be allowed to drive in Saudi Arabia.

Yamani appealed in an interview with Al-Watan to “the Grand Mufti, the Board of Senior Ulema’ and the Shoura Council to resolve the issue and relieve Saudi women of this injustice”.

“How can a person stop his wife and daughters driving a car without a Shariah text to support him, and then go and permit them to get in a car with a foreign man?” Yamani asked.

Yamani was quoted by the newspaper as calling for “some adaptation to the requirements of the age, as has happened in other cases.”


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