Nov 23, 2012
Saudi Arabia introduced an electronic tracking system that alerts men by text message when their wife is leaving the country, even if they are traveling together. The system was swiftly condemned by activists and Twitter users.
Saudi women – banned in the country from driving, denied the right to travel without their husband’s consent and required to wear a veil from head to toe – are now to be monitored by a new electronic system that tracks cross-border movement, AFP reported.
Woman in Saudi Arabia are not allowed to leave the ultraconservative kingdom without the permission of their male ‘guardian,’ or husband, who must give his consent by signing a register known as the ‘yellow sheet’ at the border or airport. Now, husbands will receive a text message to remind them even if they’re traveling outside the country alongside their wife.
The move was quickly condemned and ridiculed on Twitter, which has remained an island of free speech in the repressive Islamic nation.