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    » 05/02/2008, 00.00

    SAUDI ARABIA

    Saudi women had more rights at the time of the Romans than today



    This is shown by a book written by a female scholar and published in Great Britain. At that time, they are able to run businesses; while today, at a discussion of work for women in Riyadh, all of the women were in another room.

    Riyadh (AsiaNews) - Arab women had more rights at the time of the Romans than they have today.  At that time, in fact, their capacity to conduct their own economic affairs was recognised, which is not true in Saudi Arabia today.  This is maintained by a female Saudi scholar, Hatoon al-Fassi, in a book entitled "Women In Pre-Islamic Arabia", published by British Archaeological Reports.

    Barred from teaching at King Saud University in 2001, the scholar has examined the situation of Nabataea, a kingdom that at the beginning of the Christian era included parts of modern-day Jordan, Syria, and Saudi Arabia, and had its capital in Petra.  Here, Fassi maintains, women were able to conduct business, without even the form of "protection" required by Greek tradition in these matters.  In her opinion, it is precisely because of the lack of understanding on the part of Islamic scholars of the influences of Greco-Roman legislation on sharia that the limited rights and freedoms for women have arisen.

    "We now live the worst status imaginable": this statement from Fawziya al-Oyouni, a women's rights activist, is reported in the review of the book on Middle East Online, which highlights how, when religious authorities, ministers, and businessmen met last month in Riyadh to discuss work for women, there were no women visible, because they were confined to another room, and the men were able only to hear them.

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    See also

    28/09/2011 SAUDI ARABIA
    Woman sentenced to 10 lashes for driving through the streets of Jeddah:
    Only men are allowed behind the wheel in Saudi Arabia. This is the first sentence imposed by a judge, in the past women were arrested for few days, then released. Women's rights movement announces an appeal. For activists, the sentence shows the gap between promises and reality of openness of an ultra-conservative society.

    02/12/2011 SAUDI ARABIA
    If Saudi women allowed to drive in 10 years "there would be no virgins"
    Report compiled by one of nations most important Religious Councils, accompanied by a "scientific" analysis, sent to all members of the Legislative Assembly. Increase in homosexuality, prostitution and pornography.

    03/11/2010 SAUDI ARABIA
    Saudi women are forbidden to work as cashiers in supermarkets
    "Women should look for a decent job, that does not make it possible for them to attract or be attracted to men," states fatwa. Dismay among the Saudi people (men and women) over the ruling, which bans women from working as cashiers because contrary to the rules on the separation of the sexes. The supermarket is considered to be a mixed environment.

    11/03/2009 SAUDI ARABIA
    Prison, whipping for 75-year-old widow: her nephew brought her bread
    The poor woman is suspected of seducing two young men. She even risks being kicked out of the country. There are criticisms of abuse of power on the part of the religious police, who watch over the morality and behavior of citizens, gravely interfering in individuals' private lives.

    07/08/2012 SAUDI ARABIA
    A women-only Industrial City is launched
    The project follows the government guidelines to create more job opportunities for women. There will be women-led companies and production lines for the women. Job opportunities for young people.



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