It's impossible to overstate the importance of mobility to freedom in any country, but particularly Saudi Arabia, which influences the entire Muslim world.
The royal decree, read by an announcer of state television and signed by Salman, said traffic laws would be amended, including to allow the government to issue driver's licences "to men and women alike".
"Saudi Arabia allows women to drive", tweeted the official account of the country's Ministry of Foreign Affairs.
"Saudi Arabia will never be the same again". "Congratulations to the women of my homeland".
The decision reflects not only a shift in thinking about human rights but a desire to develop modern skills among half its population, women, who are still largely kept out of the new, non-oil industries. That's the context for Tuesday's surprise decree that as of next June Saudi women will be allowed to drive. It was unclear whether women would require their guardian's permission to apply for driving licences. Others argued that allowing women to drive would lead to promiscuity and the collapse of the Saudi family.
Buti said this change will not only help the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, but believes the economy will also see a positive change. Grand Mufti Sheikh Abdulaziz Al al-Sheikh, who has repeatedly opposed women working and driving and said letting them into politics may mean "opening the door to evil", has yet to comment. There in that Kingdom, in the back seat, I would hold on for dear life until I found my fantastic Egyptian Christian driver, Zacchariah, who would observe the sedate 40mph speed that I felt comfortable in while the rest of the country drove routinely above 80mph and sometimes over 100 miles per hour.
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This land mark decision was announced by king Salman just three days after the kingdom celebrated its 87th national day.
Men and women danced in the streets to drums and electronic music, in scenes that were a stunning novelty in a country. Women are also a burgeoning social force. The ban holds women back from jobs, leaves them dependent on male relatives or drivers.
According to the clerics, the majority of Council members saw no problem with women driving as long as there were guarantees and laws to maintain the respect and dignity of women, Efe reported.
In a royal decree, the monarch directed minister of interior to constitute a high-level ministerial committee to carry out studies about the necessary arrangements to implement the royal decree. The decision highlights the damage done to the kingdom's global image from the ban on women driving and Saudi's hopes for a public relations benefit from the reform.
Sept 28: Saudi appointed its first spokeswoman, Fatimah Baeshen, at its embassy in Washington. Ms. Al-Sharif, for example, is a cybersecurity expert who once worked at the state-owned Saudi Aramco before she became fed up and moved to Australia.