671px Manal al Shraif  cropped  Saudi men alerted by text when wives leave country

Saudi Arabia has implemented a new monitoring system that sends text messages to the husbands of women who leave the country, informing them of their whereabouts.

Saudi Arabia has implemented a new monitoring system that sends text messages to the husbands of women who leave the country, informing them of their whereabouts.

 
The oppressive tactic, which joins a slew of other misogynistic policies in the country like a ban on female drivers, elicited strong criticism from both men and women, with many labelling it as “backward.”
 
The law in the country, based on a strict interpretation of Islam, prohibits women from leaving the country without the permission of a male guardian, who can be either a husband, father or brother. He is required to sign a form at an airport or border permitting the woman to travel.
 
671px Manal al Shraif  cropped  Saudi men alerted by text when wives leave country
Manal al-Sharif, a women's rights activist in Saudi Arabia
 
Now technology is being utilised to enforce the ban on free movement by notifying men when women travel abroad, even if the women are actually travelling with their husbands. One woman likened the approach to using “tracking ankle bracelets.”
 
Badriya al-Bishr, a Saudi author and journalist, said this is the latest move in a “state of slavery” for women. Women only secured the right to vote in a decision made by the country's king last year, while a ruling to allow women to plead cases in court was decided just last month. In some ways the country appears to want to move forward, but government-backed moves like this latest one show that there is still a long way to go for the equal rights of Saudi women.
 
Source: The Telegraph