Saudi Arabia Makes History As Women Attend Football Match
Saudi Arabia”s Deputy Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman  REUTERS/Charles Platiau/File Photo

Saudi Arabia on Friday allowed women to enter a football stadium to watch a football game, the first time in the country’s history.

The new rule comes as the ultra-conservative kingdom eases strict decades-old rules separating the sexes.

Recall that the country had last year announced it was lifting a ban prohibiting them from driving, as well as reopening cinemas.

It was gathered that women supporters, wearing the traditional black abaya robe, arrived well ahead of kick-off in the Jeddah stadium, some in sunglasses and others with loose-fitting veils.

Since last year, the Islamic kingdom has announced a series of reforms marshaled by powerful Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman.

The first football match women are being allowed to attend is a clash between Saudi Premier League clubs Al-Ahli and Al-Batin in the Red Sea city of Jeddah.

Alone or accompanied by their families, many women sat in reserved seats in Jeddah’s Pearl stadium.

The game was scheduled to kick off at 8:00 pm (1700 GMT), but enthusiasm for the historic encounter began well before the kick-off.