They may have gained the right to vote but Saudi Arabia is still no friend to women. On Tuesday, a court sentenced Shaima Ghassaniya with 10 lashes for defying the country's ban on women driving, according to Saudi activists. There aren't any specific laws prohibiting women from taking to the road but religious leaders have banned its practice. There is some novelty to the punishment in this particular case, the Associated Press reports:
Najalaa Harriri, who is also facing court for driving, told The Associated Press she needed to drive to take better care of her children. Tuesday’s verdict is the first of its kind in Saudi Arabia. Other women were detained for several days, but had not been sentenced by a court.
According to the BBC, the woman has already filed an appeal to the ruling. The disappointing news comes just days after Saudi King Abdullah announced that Saudi women will get the right to vote and can run for office in local elections in 2015.
This article is from the archive of our partner The Wire.