The Kingdom of Saudi Arabia (KSA) has made history by introducing women police officers, who will work alongside their male counterparts. They first appeared on 20th April deployed at Mecca’s Grand Mosque. Their pictures of patrolling the mosque’s compound have gone viral on social media. Saudi female police have supervised the Mecca pilgrims for the first time, which marks another step towards the dramatic societal change KSA is going through under the leadership of crown prince, Mohammed bin Salman (MBS).
This move is part of Saudi Vision 2030 and has impressed a wide part of global community as it addresses major security concerns of women during pilgrims.
How Saudi Female Police Will Help Pilgriming Women?
One of the major security problems women face during the pilgrim is harassment from spiritually damaged men. Whenever they reported such instances to male guards, they usually shooed them away. Deployment of Saudi female police will allow those women to successfully report harassment and hold the violator accountable for his actions.
There have been many reports of male guards involving in sexual crimes themselves. The world was horrified after seeing women on social media expressing their stories of getting harassed by the so-called guards of the Holy Place.
Saudi female police officers come as an upgrade to the current disgusting system of security at the most important place for Muslims worldwide.
Is KSA Working to Improve Women Empowerment and Security?
As the disadvantages of patriarchy continue to grow, there is a need for women’s empowerment, especially in Muslim countries. A few years back, Saudi government also allowed women to drive in the Kingdom. The decision received a mixed response but it slightly put KSA on the map of women empowerment. However, there is still much to do.
Women have long been repressed by men often in the name of culture, religion or so-called social value. The presence of Saudi female police officers will certainly boost the confidence of women who want to visit the Mosque. Women have been feeling scared and traumatized for performing their religious duties because of vile men who do not even spare women in the mosque of Holy Prophet (PBUH).
Women police officers told the media that their main mission was to maintain security and help those who visit Masjid-Al-Haram with various issues. Apart from implementing COVID-19 protocols, they seem confident to take necessary actions against more serious violators of women’s security.
Where Else Female Forces Are Deployed?
The Kingdom has also allowed local men and women to apply for military positions through their unified admission portal. The country’s armed forces launched a military wing for females in 2020. They can now join Saudi Arabian Army (SAA), Royal Saudi Air Defense (RSAD), Royal Saudi Navy (RSNF), Royal Saudi Strategic Missile Force (RSSMF), and Armed Forces Medical Services (AFMS).
They hold key positions in these departments like corporals, lance corporals, sergeants, and lieutenants. Apart from the military, women have also started to fly commercial flights in KSA.
What Is Saudi Vision 2030?
MBS formed a strategic framework to reform the country’s controversial legislature in 2016. ‘Saudi Vision 2030’ plans to complete all reforms by the year 2030 which includes reducing its dependency on oil, diversify its economy, and tone down on Islamization.
The framework also contains plans to develop the public service industry including health, education, tourism, and recreation. Saudi female police sharing workforce with men contribute towards the diversification of the Saudi economy.
The Saudi vision 2030 has the potential to rectify the issues. but the program has fallen very short of its targets. Not much improvement has been seen in the economic front. The data from last year suggested that there was around a 5% decrease in its GDP. KSA’s 2020 economic performance has shown an increase in the unemployment rate and lower foreign direct investment turnover. However, for now most of the economic indicators can see the impact of Covid19 and war with Yemen.