Riyadh, Saudi Arabia - Following the one year anniversary of the Women2Drive campaign Saudi King Abdullah is being urged to give women the right to drive. Hundreds of people have petitioned Abdullah. The campaign was initially launched June 2011.
About 600 signatures were received. According to reports Saudi Arabia is the only country in the world that doesn't allow women to drive. Abdullah is being asked to encourage women who have obtained driving licenses from neighboring countries to begin driving whenever necessary.
The monarch has also been asked to establish driving schools for women and begin issuing licenses. In the petition Abdullah received thanks for giving women the right to in municipal elections that are expected to occur in 2015.
Saudi women say they only want to get the right to drive that women all around the world have. The campaign encouraged Saudi women to disregard the ban and drive.
Last year one woman was arrested for defying the ban and driving, then later freed. Sheima Jastaniah, who was pardoned by the king after being sentenced to 10 lashes for breaking the driving ban last September, has also signed the petition.
Hundreds of women have driven since the campaign was launched and many of them have been arrested and forced to sign a pledge stating they will never drive again, according to activists.
A group of defiant women got behind the wheel of their cars last June in response to calls for nationwide action to break the ban.
The campaign, which spread through Facebook and Twitter, was the largest mass action since November 1990, when 47 Saudi women were arrested and punished after demonstrating in cars.
There is no law that specifically forbids women to drive, but the minister of interior formally banned women from driving following that protest.
Women who have the financial means hire drivers while others must depend on the goodwill of male relatives to get around.
They also have to be veiled in public and may not travel unless accompanied by their husbands or a close male relative.