Next Sunday, women in Saudi Arabia will at last be allowed to drive, potentially transforming millions of lives. But the change has been overshadowed by the arrest of many of the activists who campaigned for decades against the ban
Enaam Alaswad has only risked getting behind the wheel of a car in Saudi Arabia once, sparked by the frustration of watching her driver try and fail, repeatedly, to squeeze into a tight parking space on the baking, dusty streets of her seaside hometown, Jeddah.
“I couldn’t bear it, I asked him to get out, and parked it myself. Then I got out and walked away,” says the 43-year-old with a laugh. With that neat piece of parallel parking, she would once have risked arrest. But Saudi Arabia is changing.