“Electing Saudi Arabia to protect women’s rights is like making an arsonist into the town fire chief. It’s absurd,” Hillel Neuer, the UN Watch chief, said.
Every Saudi woman “must have a male guardian who makes all critical decisions on her behalf, controlling a woman’s life from her birth until death. Saudi Arabia also bans women from driving cars,” Neuer said.
Saudi Arabia was elected by a secret ballot last week by the UN’s Economic and Social Council (ECOSOC), having 54 nations as members.
Saudi Arabia along with Iraq, South Korea and Turkmenistan has been elected for a four-year term, from 2018 to 2022, among the Asia-Pacific States.
Twitter users, including Saudi Arabian women, were quick to respond to the news.
The CSW is aimed at “promoting women’s rights, documenting the reality of women’s lives throughout the world, and shaping global standards on gender equality and the empowerment of women,”according to its website.
Saudi Arabia’s bid to be elected to the UN Commission on the Status of Women was made in September 2016. At the time, the country referred to its record on women’s rights protection, which goes “in accordance with Sharia, which guarantees fair gender equality.”
Under Saudi Arabia’s male guardianship system, adult women need permission from a male guardian – usually from a husband, father, brother, or son – to travel, marry or exit prison. They may be asked to provide their guardian’s consent to work or access healthcare. Authorities have long been promising to abolish this rule. But it remains intact.
Saudi king’s son who ‘bombed ISIS & Yemen’ named as ambassador to US
Prince Khaled is an Air Force pilot who has taken part in operations in Yemen and against ISIS, AP reports. The prince, who studied military aviation in the US and briefly attended both Harvard University and Georgetown, has been working as an adviser at the Saudi Arabian Embassy in Washington since last year.
Khaled’s position will allow Trump a direct line to the Saudi monarchy, further signalling warmer relations between the two powers after a cooling following the Obama administration’s nuclear agreement with regional rival Iran.
Saudi Arabia’s defense minister, and another of King Salman’s sons, Deputy Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman, met with Trump in the White House in March.
US Defense Secretary James Mattis met with King Salman and Prince Mohammed in Riyadh on Wednesday and said it was in the US’s interest “to see a strong Saudi Arabia,” in reference to its “military security services and secret services.”
Mattis also said the Saudi nemesis, Iran, aims to “destabilize” the region. “Everywhere you look if there is trouble in the region, you find Iran,” Mattis told reporters in Riyadh. The statement echoed the Saudi government’s own stance.
Fallon hails arms manufacturer who sold missiles to Yemen-bombing Saudis & Gaddafi https://on.rt.com/89ks
‘Role model’? Fallon hails arms manufacturer who sold missiles to Yemen-bombing Saudis & Gaddafi —…
UK Defense Secretary Michael Fallon has called missiles producer MBDA, known for controversial arms sales to Saudi Arabia and Libya’s Gaddafi government, a “role model” of cooperation, while unveil…
Prince Khaled replaces Prince Abdullah bin Faisal bin Turki as ambassador to the US. Prince Abdullah held the post for 18 months.
The Kingdom also fired Information Minister Adel Al-Toraifi, replacing him with former ambassador to Germany Awwad bin Al-Awwad. A number of new appointments were announced Friday, and shared by the Saudi Government Press Agency.