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Activists: 2 Saudi women take drive in capital

This challenge to the Saudi driving ban reminds me of the civil rights movement in the United States in the 1960s. Each day the women become bolder in their effort to defy the driving ban. Yesterday, Secretary of State Hillary Clinton praised the women for their bravery.

Fahad Shadeed / Reuters

Female driver Azza Al Shmasani alights from her car after driving in defiance of the ban in Riyadh June 22. Saudi Arabia has no formal ban on women driving. But as citizens must use only Saudi-issued licences in the country, and as these are issued only to men, women drivers are anathema. An outcry at the segregation, which contributes to the general cloistering of Saudi women, has been fueled by social media interest in two would-be female motorists arrested in May.


Fayez Nureldine / AFP - Getty Images

A note is placed next to the shattered side-view mirror of a car belonging to Saudi Iman al-Nafjan's family which the family says was put as a warning after she drove in Riyadh on June 22 amid calls for nationwide action to break what amounts to a traditional driving ban, unique to the ultra-conservative kingdom.