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Saudi women to be allowed in sport stadium

January 28, 2012

Saudi Arabia's strict interpretation of Islam prohibits unrelated men and women from mingling.—AFP photo

RIYADH: A government-run Saudi Arabian newspaper reports that for the first time in the conservative Muslim country, women will be allowed to attend soccer matches in one of the country's stadiums.

Al-Sharq newspaper on Saturday quoted unnamed officials as saying that women will be able to watch the matches in a new facility that will be completed in 2014 in the western port city of Jeddah.

The officials say that the new stadium will include a family section with private cabins and balconies for women who wish to attend the games.

Saudi Arabia's strict interpretation of Islam prohibits unrelated men and women from mingling. Women and men in Saudi Arabia remain highly segregated and are restricted in how they are allowed to mix in public.