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Petitioning Senior Advisor on Development, Secretary of State Hillary Clinton Steve Radelet and 27 others

Tell the State Department to Condemn the Detention of Women Drivers


It seems the United States has no problem with Saudi Arabian women being arrested for driving a car.

Come again?

On Thursday, June 30, State Department spokesperson Mark C. Toner was grilled about the United States’ position on the arrest and detention of a number of Saudi women for driving during a State Department briefing.

But get this: the United States' representative to the outside world refused to condemn the arrests of women for simply driving a car!  

When a reporter asked “What do you make of the fact that the Saudi religious police are running around, plucking women out of cars?” the State Department spokesperson replied by framing the issue as “an internal matter for Saudi Arabia.”

When a reporter asked “Do you think that it’s a good thing that the Saudi religious police are taking women out of cars when they’re driving and arresting them?” the State Department spokesperson replied “This is an issue that Saudi Arabians are grappling with.”
Finally, when a reporter asked “You won’t come out and say that it’s a bad thing for the religious police to be detaining women who are driving?” the spokesperson replied. “I’ve given you the details as I know them.”

Does it make sense to anyone that the representatives of the United States to the outside world have nothing to say when asked if arresting women for driving is wrong?

This is an embarrassment to our country and an offense to women. It needs to be corrected immediately.


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