Saudi women permitted to work in female accessories shops

Ahram Online, Sunday 6 Jan 2013

After 2011 fatwa prohibiting women from working in lingerie and accessories shops, head of 'moral' committee says women now allowed provided they do not violate Sharia law

Saudi women
Saudi women (Photo: Reuters)

Saudi women will be permitted to work in shops selling female accessories as long as they are subject to the rules of Islamic Sharia, confirmed Abdel-Latif Sheikh, head of Saudi government committee "Promote Virtue and Prevent Vice" (PVPV) Saturday.

Speaking to Saudi newspaper Al-Madina, Sheikh explained that the PVPV will be authorised to restrict women from this type of work if they violate Sharia law.

In December 2011, the Saudi grand Mufti issued a fatwa (religious edict) prohibiting women from working in accessories and lingerie shops describing the job as "criminal and disrespectful."

Unemployment among women is exceptionally high in Saudi Arabia: it surpasses the unemployment rate for men by almost 30 per cent.

A total of 1.7 million female citizens do not have jobs despite the fact that almost half of these women hold university degrees, the Saudi labour ministry indicated in December last year.

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