Saudis to open sports stadiums to women

Saudi Arabia will allow women into sports stadiums for the first time from next year, authorities said Sunday (October 29th), in a landmark move opening up three previously male-only venues to families, AFP reported.

The kingdom has long barred women from sports arenas by strict rules on segregation of the sexes in public.

The announcement is in line with Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman's ambitious reforms, including the historic decision to allow women to drive from next June.

"Starting the preparation of three stadiums in Riyadh, Jeddah and Dammam to be ready to accommodate families from early 2018," the General Sports Authority said.

Last month, hundreds of women were allowed to enter a sports stadium in Riyadh in a one-off event to celebrate Saudi Arabia's national day.

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