In a reversal of a longstanding rule, Saudi Arabia has announced that it will now allow women to drive.
In a royal decree signed by King Salman bin Abdulaziz Al Saud, the order said it will be effective immediately but the rollout will take months, the Saudi Press Agency reported on Tuesday.
A high-level committee of ministers has been set up to examine the arrangements for the enforcement of the order.
The committee will take up the recommendations within 30 days from the date of the decree, and will be implemented between 23 and 24 of June 2018, based on the Islamic calendar.
The decree said that women would be allowed to drive “in accordance with the Islamic laws”.
The announcement follows a gender-mixed celebration of Saudi National Day over the weekend, the first of its kind, which aimed to spotlight the kingdom’s reform push, analysts said, despite a backlash from religious conservatives.
Saudi Arabia is the only country in the world which does not allow women to drive.
While there have been restrictions imposed on women drivers, some female activists have defied the ban leading to their arrests.