Saudi Arabia recently launched its first ever girls’ council meeting with no women in sight.

Pictures released to mark the first Qassim Girls Council meeting showed 13 men on stage, and not a single woman.

According to the BBC the women were in another room, linked by video.

The launch of the initiative was led by Prince Faisal bin Mishal bin Saud, Governor of al-Qassim province, who said he was proud of the conference which was the first of its kind in the kingdom.

“In the Qassim region, we look at women as sisters to men, and we feel a responsibility to open up more and more opportunities that will serve the work of women and girls,” he is reported to have said.

The girls’ council is chaired by Princess Abir bint Salman, Prince Faisal’s wife.

In Saudi Arabia, a state policy of gender segregation is rigorously enforced between unrelated men and women.

Currently, only 22% of women in Saudi Arabia participate in the workforce, though the kingdom hopes to increase this to 30% as part of its Vision 2030 programme.

Source: ITV News

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