Only a few days after the women in Saudi Arabia were allowed to vote by the decision of King Abdullah, two women were punished for daring to drive a car on public roads and one of them was sentenced to 10 lashes by a court in Jeddah.

“Saudi Arabia made the giant leap this week from an F- to an F+ in human rights. It’s unconscionable that in the 21st century a woman cannot drive herself to work, a restaurant or just for the fun of it”, said the executive director of Advancing Human Rights, David Keyes.

Refusing to talk to the media about her trial, Sheima Jastaniah was sentenced on Monday by a court in the Red Sea city of Jeddah after being caught driving back in July. The woman contested the sentence and she hopes she will get off without this punishment.

Saudi Arabia is one of the most restrictive countries in the world when it comes to women’s rights and until a few days ago they couldn’t even vote. Men in their families are in charge of their destinies.

It’s being believed that Saudi Arabian women have been inspired by Arab revolts that led to the fall of leaders in Egypt, Tunisia and Libya and have chosen their unique way of protesting.


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