Saudi Arabian women are now tracked by their own government. The Telegraph reports that, as of last week, Saudi men began receiving texts informing them when women under their custody crossed the border. This happens even if the man and woman are together.
The Saudis operate under laws influenced by the strict Wahabi interpretation of Islam. Under these laws, Saudi Arabian women are not allowed to leave the country without permission from their male guardian, (a husband, father, or brother) who has to consent by signing a “yellow sheet” at the airport or border.
According to the AFP, Saudi Arabians, male and female, are not entirely pleased about this new law.
Many turned to Twitter to condemn the initiative. Some of the Tweets included:
“Why don’t you cuff your women with tracking ankle bracelets too?”
“Why don’t we just install a microchip into our women to track them around?”
“If I need an SMS to let me know my wife is leaving Saudi Arabia, then I’m either married to the wrong woman or need a psychiatrist.”
Activist Suad Shemmari says that Saudi women are treated like minors their entire lives even if they hold high positions. Shemmari said: “…there can never be reform in the kingdom without changing the status of women…”
The restrictions on Saudi women have led to a high unemployment rate for them, officially estimated at 30 percent.
However, last year King Abdullah gave women the right to vote and run in the 2015 municipal elections, a historic first for the country.
What do you think of the restrictions on Saudi women?