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Economic forces are believed to be helping to drive change as the stadiums were built with hundreds of millions of dollars generated when oil prices were nearly double what they are now – and allowing women to enter effectively doubles the potential audience of the lavishly maintained venues.The kingdom appears to be relaxing some of its ultra-conservative interpretation of Islamic law as part of its Vision 2030 plan for economic and social reform, which aims to boost female employment rates from 22 to 30 per cent.In a standalone Mc Donald’s restaurant, however, there are two completely segregated sections so the men on their own would not mingle at all with the women and men on the other side.Banned: Movie theaters Movie theaters are prohibited and they are only located within private company compounds, such as theaters at Saudi Aramco residential camps.In Saudi Arabia there are no specific statutes or laws to govern by.The sole constitution that is used is the Quran, which all judges have to interpret conservatively.Campaigners in the country have fought for years to overturn the oppressive guardianship system, where a male family member – usually the father, husband or brother – must give permission for a woman to study, travel or take part in other everyday activities.
Many Saudis also responded enthusiastically when women were allowed into the Riyadh stadium for national day celebrations last month.
The authority said the three major sports stadiums in the capital, Riyadh, and the cities of Jiddah and Dammam, will undergo renovations to accommodate families.
The decision comes after the Saudi public appeared to welcome a decision to allow women to drive for the first time next year.
The penalty for violating that rule would lead to the store being shut down.
Also on that day, schoolgirls are prohibited from wearing anything red – not even a red scarf.
Saudi Arabia has formally announced it will allow women to enter sports stadiums as the Islamic kingdom inches toward easing rules on gender segregation — but they will be seated in the so-called family section, an area separate from the male-only crowd.