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00:00:01
>> Women behind the wheel or working out in colorful sportswear, sights like these would have been unthinkable in Saudi Arabia just a few years ago. I'm Reuters correspondent Sarah Dadush having just arrived in London after spending six months in Saudi Arabia. Working in Saudi Arabia as a woman was not as challenging as I thought it would be, although there were some issues.
00:00:19
Uber drivers tend to not listen to you as a woman when you give them directions even if you know the streets better than they do. There aren't a lot of female toilets in a lot of places, including government buildings, and a man once pretended to be mute and deaf to avoid talking to me in a supermarket.
00:00:38
But things are definitely rapidly changing, as my male colleagues tended to tell me, just being in a car with an all male team a few years ago would have been unimaginable unless I was married to one of them. People in Saudi Arabia tend to spend a significant amount of time on social media, from Instagram and Twitter, but especially Snapchat, taking videos of something as boring as a press conference to a camel race.
00:01:00
And I think it's just the younger Saudi generation trying to leave their mark on this digital world and connect with places outside of Saudi Arabia. My last week there, I covered the lift of the ban on women driving and it felt like the whole city was waiting for it.
00:01:17
There was definitely excitement in the air for this landmark decision to happen. But women's troubles in Saudi Arabia did not end with the lift of the driving ban. A lot of women's activists were arrested in the month leading up to the ban. The guardianship system is still very much in place.
00:01:32
I knew of someone there who when she got her passport because she couldn't get a male guardian to sign off on her traveling just put it in a picture frame and hung it up on the wall as a memento. So although change is definitely happening in Saudi Arabia and I was able to do and cover things that I would not have been able to do and cover just a few years ago, it's very clear that the only change that's allowed to happen is one that has been cleared by the government.