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Saudi macho-male Facebook effort to deter women from driving as women wage another campaign to get behind the wheel

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Around 5,537 participants on the social network site Facebook vowed to physically beat men and women who support Saudi women driving their four wheels.

The anonymous founder of the Facebook page urged his male counterparts to use “all they can to stop women from driving,” including the “Igal.”

“Igal” is the thick black-circled wiring that holds the usually white-red checkered scarf “Ghutra” which mainly Gulf Arabs don.

The macho Facebook “Igal” campaign was formed to denounce a women-led Facebook campaign entitled “I will drive my car,” which attracted 11,500 participants.

Manal al-Sherif re-ignited the women rights to drive again, when she posted last week on YouTube a video of herself behind the wheel in the eastern city of Khobar.

Saudi authorities have re-arrested her for defying the ban on female drivers in the conservative kingdom. Her YouTube video received 500,000 viewers as of Monday.

She was accused of “violating public order,” and ordered held for five days while the case is investigated, an official said.

(Dina Al-Shibeeb, an editor at Al Arabiya English, can be reached at: dina.ibrahim@mbc.net.)