For most people in the world, driving a car is not only considered a privilege, but a basic human right. Unfortunately for women in Saudi Arabia, the country denies them the opportunity to get behind the wheel. Still, many are attempting to change that, including a group of United States Senators.
Saudi Women for Driving, an activist group who wants the ban lifted, has been making bold moves to have its voice heard. Last month, they targeted Subaru to stop selling cars in the country, presumably because the automaker has increasingly marketed and catered to increasing number of women car shoppers.
The group received an even bigger boost in the form of female U.S. Senators who are demanding Saudi leaders to lift the ban. A total of 14 senators from both sides of the aisle recently pled their case in a letter to King Abdullah. Senator Barbara Boxer (D-CA) wrote “The prohibition on women driving motor vehicles, even in cases of emergency, makes it impossible for citizens to exercise a basic human right.”
The letter follows weeks after U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton voicing her support to lift the ban.
“We welcome the support of so many U.S. senators,” said Saudi Women for Driving, the group that organized the initiative, in a written statement. “It’s high time that American leaders start taking the lead, and demanding that Saudi women be afforded the most basic human rights.”
The group started the campaign in May. In addition to calling on world leaders for support, the women have coordinated protests by defying the law and driving cars in public.