Islam exposes them to evil, driving a car temporarily liberates them.
Saudi Arabia’s top cleric defends ban on women driving as it would ‘expose them to evil’
- Grand Mufti Sheikh Abdul Aziz bin-Abdullah al-Sheikh supports ban
- He said ‘obsessed’ men with ‘weak spirits’ could cause women harm
- Religious leader added families ‘would not know where women were’
Saudi Arabia’s Grand Mufti Abdul Aziz bin-Abdullah has defended the country’s ‘ban’ on women driving
Saudi Arabia’s top cleric has defended a ban on women driving claiming it would ‘expose them to evil’.
Grand Mufti Sheikh Abdul Aziz bin-Abdullah al-Sheikh added ‘obsessed’ men with ‘weak spirits’ could end up causing female drivers harm.
Women driving in Saudi Arabia is not technically against the law, but is banned in practice because women are not able to obtain driving licences.
Some exceptions have been made in rural areas if a woman driving is essential for her family life.
According to The Independent, the religious leader was speaking on a Saudi television channel and also claimed women driving alone could cause problems for families as they ‘would not know where they were’.
Last year campaigner Loujain al-Hathloul was jailed for 10 weeks after violating the ban by driving from the United Arab Emirates to the Saudi border.
And in February 2015, Saudi historian Saleh al-Saadoon caused controversy in trying to justify the ban, claiming women ‘could be raped’ if their cars broke down.
The historian was speaking on Saudi Rotana Khalijiyya TV and added his opinion that in countries like America sexual crimes ‘are no big deal’ to women.
But some progress on women’s rights has been made recently, with females allowed to stand and vote in municipal elections for the first time last December.