The wife of the one the world’s wealthiest men is frustrated she cannot drive in her own country. This despite she is able to do so in another lands.
Princess Amira al-Taweel, wife of billionaire Prince Alwaleed bin Talal, spoke about her dreams of driving to the Al-Watan newspaper in Saudi Arabia.
“I am certainly ready to drive. I have an international driving licence and I drive in every country of the world that I travel to,” she told the paper.
“I would like to drive here with my sister or my friend next to me instead of a driver.”
Since the formation of the Kingdom in 1932, ultraconservative Saudi Arabia has banned women from driving cars. It is argued that if they do, they will be free to leave their homes unattended, and be in contact with male strangers, such as police and mechanics.
Amira’s husband Prince Alwaleed, a nephew of Saudi monarch King Abdullah, ranked 19th on Forbes magazine’s March 2008 world’s richest list with a fortune estimated at 21 billion dollars.
He has been outspoken in promoting more freedoms for women in Saudi Arabia.
The attractive blue-eyed princess, who helps run her husband’s foundation for orphans and battered women, also broke with tradition in the interview by allowing her picture to be published with her face uncovered.
Saudi newspapers rarely show Saudi women’s faces, though foreign women, including Muslims from other countries, are often shown without veils.