Saudi Arabia has begun allowing adult women to travel without permission and to exercise more control over family matters.
The regulatory changes stipulated that a Saudi passport should be issued to any citizen who applies for it and that any person above the age of 21 does not need permission to travel.
They also granted women for the first time the right to register child birth, marriage or divorce and to be issued official family documents and be eligible as a guardian to children who are minors.
“The passports and civil status departments and their branches in all regions of the kingdom have started to implement the amendments stipulated in the royal decree,” the SPA report said, citing an interior ministry source.
A Saudi newspaper reported that more than 1,000 women in the country’s Eastern Province had left Saudi Arabia yesterday without their guardian’s permission, in what appeared to be an early implementation of the new rules.