By DONNA ABU-NASR
RIYADH, Saudi Arabia (AP) — When Ruwaida al-Habis' father and two brothers were badly burned in a fire, she had no choice but to break Saudi Arabia's ban on women drivers to get them to a clinic.
Using the driving skills her father taught her on the family farm, al-Habis managed to reach the clinic's emergency entrance without a hitch.
"When I pulled up, a crowd of people surrounded the car and stared as if they were seeing extraterrestrial beings," the 20-year-old university student told The Associated Press. "Instead of focusing on the burn victims, the nurses kept repeating, 'You drove them here?'"
Saudi Arabia is the only country in the world that bans all women — Saudi and foreign — from driving. The prohibition forces families to hire live-in drivers, and women who cannot afford the $300-$400 a month for a driver must rely on male relatives to drive them to work, school, shopping or the doctor.
But there are signs support for the ban is eroding.
Al-Habis' story was first published in one of the biggest Saudi...