Release Saudi Woman Arrested for Simply Driving a Car
  • Petitioned Muhammad ibn Abd al-Karim bin Abdul Aziz Al-Essa

This petition was delivered to:

Saudi Minister of Justice
Muhammad ibn Abd al-Karim bin Abdul Aziz Al-Essa
King Abdullah
Saudi Minister of Interior
Prince Nayef bin Abdul-Aziz Al Saud
Saudi Minister of Culture and Information
Dr Abdulaziz Khoja
Saudi Ministry of Justice

Release Saudi Woman Arrested for Simply Driving a Car

    1. Petition by

      Saudi Women for Driving سعوديات يطالبن بالقيادة

May 2011


Almost 3,500 people from all over the world called for the immediate release of Manal al-Sharif, a Saudi mother arrested for daring to drive a car. After extensive pressure from activist groups and media outlets all over the world, the Saudi government had no choice but to give in, and today at 6pm Saudi time, Manal was released from prison!

While this is cause for celebration, we must also remember that Saudi Arabia remains the only country on earth where a woman can't drive or even ride a bicycle, and this is only one small step towards ending Saudi Arabia's 'gender apartheid.' That's why we have decided to take this to the next level, with a new campaign calling on US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton to make a public statement asking Saudi Arabia to give women the right to drive. 

Given the recent arrests of women trying to drive, now is the time for the US to show its muscle... We believe that Secretary Clinton making a public statement of support for Saudi Arabia opening the country's roads to women would be a game changing moment.

Please sign and share the new petition as much as you can, and thanks again for taking action!

We the women of Saudi Arabia and our supporters all over the world express our deep concern over the arrest of Saudi citizen Manal al-Sharif on Saturday, May 22, 2011 for driving a car.

We call on the Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques to immediately release Manal Al-Sharif as she was accompanied by her brother and had his consent to drive, recognized in accordance with the Saudi traffic system and contained in Article II, paragraph 34, of Saudi traffic laws.

Senior Saudi Islamic scholars have reported that there is no religious reason to prevent women from driving and a ban on women driving cars is not even found in the text of any Saudi legal statute, yet the reality is that women are not allowed to drive in Saudi Arabia. This means Saudi Arabia is not in compliance with the Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimation Against Women which it signed in 2000, and thus must withdraw it’s membership.


King Abdullah, Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques, declared in 2007 that the issue of women driving cars is a social issue, not a religious matter, and therefore subject to the rule of the state, which means that in theory if the community wanted to lift the ban on women driving there would be no obstacle.


We believe that the time has come to clearly resolve the issue of women driving cars. It is unjust to say it is a social issue and that Islam does not prevent ladies from driving, while simultaneously arresting a woman driving her car. Saudi Arabia is in need of a clear system, either to prevent women from driving, or, in case female driving is allowed, a clear indication that ladies are permitted to drive cars in Saudi Arabia.

We all hope for the urgent release of Manal.

God bless you.

Recent signatures


    1. Documents given to WikiLeaks show Obama administration pushed Saudis to give female citizens more rights

    2. Ms. Blog: Can Social Networking Put Saudi Women Behind the Wheel?

    3. Reached 3 signatures
    4. Reports are that Manal's 5-year-old son is sick and in the hospital while she remains in jail for driving a car

    5. Reached 2 signatures
    6. Confirmed: Saudi Arabia extends detention of female driver

    7. Great article: A Fast Car Following Rosa's Footsteps

    8. Reached 1 signatures
    9. Sabq news claims inside sources say that Manal al-Sharif's imprisonment has been extended for ten days starting today.

    10. Reached 500 signatures
    11. Saudi Arabia must free female driver, says rights group

    12. Reached 25 signatures


    Reasons for signing

    • R. A. Osborne NEWPORT NEWS, VA
      • over 3 years ago

      One day, the people of the Middle East will realize that strong men welcome equal treatment of women while weak, insecure men fear it.

      Hang in there, Manal and all the women of Saudi! We're pulling for you.

    • Max Waller PACOIMA, CA
      • over 3 years ago

      Prove that Islam is a religion of peace, please stop this horrible practice.

    • Sheila Mahon NY, NY
      • over 3 years ago

      These women are your MOTHERS, DAUGHTERS,SISTERS. SHAME ON YOU. Are men so WEAK, so TERRIFIED of womens's power that they have to subjegate them?

    • Jessica Waters CLEVELAND, OH
      • over 3 years ago

      I refuse to do nothing while the rights of individuals are persecuted, I will not stand for unjust treatment of human beings.

    • Stephanie Nash CLIFTON, AUSTRALIA
      • over 3 years ago

      Please with respect allow this woman her freedom and allow women to drive and gain much respect for your country in the eyes of the world for showing compassion and foresight knowing that in doing so your country is truly a country of the 21st century not one of the cruel and abhorrent and feral times of old.


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