Saudi women measure right to watch men’s soccer in stadiums

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JEDDAH (Reuters) – Women in black abayas and fluorescent orange vests stood during a gates during King Abdullah Stadium, welcoming people into a family territory that, for a initial time in Saudi Arabia, authorised women to attend a men’s soccer match.

As a dual teams al-Ahli and al-Batin faced any other in a city of Jeddah, women showed adult to their initial open sporting eventuality in a Kingdom to support a sides with their spouses, children and friends.

The General Sports Authority announced in Oct that stadiums in Jeddah, Dammam and Riyadh will be set adult to accommodate families starting in 2018.

“Honestly this preference should have happened a prolonged time ago,” pronounced Muneera al-Ghamdi, an attendee. “But appreciate God that it came in a right time, and hopefully what’s to come will be even some-more pleasing for women.”

The preference to concede women to attend a churned open sporting eventuality is one of many changes a nation has undergone in new months, hailed as explanation of a new on-going trend in a deeply regressive Muslim Kingdom.

On Thursday, Jeddah hold Saudi Arabia’s initial automobile muster directed during women, a few months after Saudi Arabia announced it would extend them a right to drive..

A soccer compare on Saturday in a collateral Riyadh will also be welcoming women fans.

Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman, 32, has been hailed as a face of these changes.

Many immature Saudis courtesy his new climb to energy as explanation their era is holding a executive place in using a nation whose congenital traditions have for decades done energy a range of a aged and blocked women’s progress.

“Today a commission of those who attend in practice and sports is usually 13 percent,” pronounced Hayfaa al-Sabban, who heads a competition organization.

“We aim God peaceful to lift it to 40 percent by 2030, by several events, and today’s is one of these events.”

Reporting by video group in Jeddah, Writing by Sarah Dadouch; Editing by Greg Stutchbury

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