A leading Saudi prince has said the Middle East country should end its ban on women drivers.
Prince Alwaleed bin Talal said it was “time for women to drive” in a tweet posted on Tuesday.
He also released a statement which said the ban was an “unjust act by a traditional society”.
The prince is in the Saudi government but is reputed to be a billionaire.
“Preventing a woman from driving a car is today an issue of rights similar to the one that forbade her from receiving an education or having an independent identity,” he wrote.
“They are all unjust acts by a traditional society, far more restrictive than what is lawfully allowed by the precepts of religion.”
Saudi Arabia is the only country in the world which bans women from driving and has been the focus of a campaign among activists to change the law.
As well as the social case for change, the prince also said there was an economic argument.
Saudi has been hit hard by the fall in oil prices in recent years and said women had to spend hundreds per month on a driver to get around – and usually a driver from overseas, which meant that money would end up leaving the Gulf.
“Having women drive has become an urgent social demand predicated upon current economic circumstances,” he added.