Saudi women to get new ID cards for GCC travel

Women will still need permission from male guardians to travel abroad.
By Neeraj Gangal
Sat 03 Apr 2010 10:53 AM

Starting from Saturday, Saudi women can get a national ID card that can be used to travel to countries of the Gulf Corporation Council (GCC) according to a report.

According to the Arab News daily, women don't need a male guardian to apply. However, despite the new offer from the Kingdom’s Department of Civil Affairs women will still require permission from their male guardians to travel abroad.

"This step will add some self-esteem to Saudi women that will help them ease their movement in the region, especially for businesswomen who travel a lot," Lama Al-Sulaiman, deputy chairwoman of the Jeddah Chamber of Commerce and Industry told the Saudi-based daily.

According to Arab News, the new high-tech cards will include GPS tracking, fingerprints and features that will make them difficult to forge.

The ID card, which is optional, has been seen as another step toward women's empowerment in the Saudi Kingdom.

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