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Current Event January 4, 2016

Women Enter Politics in Saudi Arabia


In an historic election for women in Saudi Arabia, women won 20 seats out of about 2,000 seats available on local councils. It was historic because even though women in Saudi Arabia are banned from driving, they were allowed to vote and be candidates for the first time. Women had to be creative in their campaigning to work around rules about women traveling unaccompanied and forced segregation of men and women. Since Saudi Arabia is a monarchy, the royal rulers make all the important political decisions and smaller decisions are left to local councils. Even considering the restrictions on women, this is a step toward women having a voice in Saudi Arabia.

Gender Politics

Story Length: 5:31

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National Public Radio © 2015 National Public Radio, Inc. Used with the permission of NPR. All rights reserved.

AIR DATE: 12/14/2015


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