Saudi Arabia approves four decisions in 10 days to ‘boost women’s rights’

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Saudi Arabia’s Justice Ministry has approved four decisions in support of women’s rights in the past ten days, the Saudi Okaz daily reported.

The decisions pertain to protecting minors, divorcees, women who have custody of their children and law graduates who have not practiced the profession yet due to male lawyers’ arbitrariness.

Legislative authorities approved 10 proceedings to control the marriage of minors, such as limiting the permission to marry off girls below 17 years old to the relevant court. The marriage application must be submitted by the girl, her mother or legal guardian in marriage.

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The cabinet also approved organizing the Alimony Fund for divorcees and children. The fund will be directly linked to the justice ministry and it will have its independent budget.

The Fund will pay alimony to beneficiaries before a verdict to cash one is issued. It will also pay alimony to women whom ex-husbands did not pay on time. The ex-husband will then pay the Fund later.

Meanwhile, the Supreme Judicial Council approved a decision pertaining to women’s custody of their children. The decision stipulates that if there are no disputes regarding the custody of children, the woman can prove they are in her custody without having to file a lawsuit in personal status courts.

As for female law graduates who haven’t been able to work and who have been exploited by some lawyers as interns, the Justice Ministry approved a three-year law diploma that concludes with granting the intern – whether male or female – a license to practice the profession.

The diploma will prepare law graduates to practice law as the intern programs which some lawyers provide do not teach interns well as they’re often assigned irrelevant tasks.

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