Saudi Arabia has further liberalized restrictions on women. From February 21, Saudi women can sign up for the army through a unified website.
According to the Saudi English media Arab News and Arab TV on February 21, women can register through a unified portal to serve in the medical services of the Saudi army, air force, navy, strategic missile force and armed forces, with the rank of sergeant.
This comes after the Saudi Ministry of Defense announced that both men and women in the country can sign up for military service through the portal.
All conscripts must have a criminal record and their physical condition must be suitable for military service.
There are also some additional criteria for female candidates, including that they must be between 21 and 40 years old, 155 cm tall or above, have at least a high school education, cannot be a government employee, and cannot marry a non-Saudi citizen, etc.
In contrast, the age range for men who apply for recruitment for the first time is between 17 and 40 years old, and the minimum height standard is 160 cm.
According to the report of Arab News, there are different reactions to the criteria for enlistment.
Harah Al-Ynabawi, an operating system expert, said that for the past 30 years, Arab countries have allowed women to join the army has been a controversial topic.
She believes that King Salman of Saudi Arabia has played an important role in promoting women’s participation in various fields.
“Women are very important in the military and they can play an active role in our conservative society,” said IT expert Rahma al-Khayri.
But she also believes that “men are the people who fight on the battlefield”.
According to previous reports, Saudi security authorities allowed women in Riyadh, Mecca, Medina and other regions to apply for military positions in 2018.
In June 2019, the Military Affairs Secretariat of the Saudi Ministry of the Interior opened applications for recruitment of female soldiers who will serve as security personnel in women’s offices of civil affairs departments across the country.
Previously, these recruitment programs required applicants to be between 25 and 35.
In October 2019, Saudi Arabia announced that it would allow women to serve in the army and established the first female department in the armed forces the following year.
The Saudi government has taken a number of measures in recent years to relax restrictions on women, including allowing women to drive in 2017, opening up some government positions to women in 2018, allowing women to travel abroad without male permission in 2019.