Three women defy Saudi ban on driving

Three Saudi women took advantage of Eid Al-Fitr that ended the fasting month of Ramadan and drove their cars in defiance of a long-standing ban on female driving in the conservative Gulf Kingdom, newspapers said on Monday.

Two women separately sat behind the wheel and drove cars through the streets of the western Red Sea port of Jeddah, Saudi Arabia’s second largest city. Another woman in the eastern province of Ihsa drove her car for several hours to visit relatives on Eid occasion, the papers reported.

“I drove my car for hours but I was not stopped by the police or harassed by men although I stopped for petrol,” said Tahani Al Jahni from Jeddah.

Tarfa Abdullah from Ihsa said she drove her car to visit relatives and friends and returned home without any incident.

“Police did not stop me although I drove for several hours…I have a driving licence from another Arab country,” she said. “I was very happy to drive and return home without any incident because I don’t want to wait for taxi for hours…private drivers have also become too expensive.”