Saudi women can now legally lock and load. In barely two years, Saudi women have earned the right to both drive and to own a firearm. While women have been legally behind the wheel since 2019, it was only last year that they were allowed to own firearms.
During the COVID-19 pandemic, shooting became popular with many Saudis as a social distanced and outdoor activity. Yet, some women have been shooting for far longer.
“At a young age my father taught me how to use and train with air rifles. I later joined the Saudi Archery Federation,” said Reem Alatawi, who later earned first place in a Saudi shooting competition.
Alatawi pointed out how relatively straight forward the process is. Potential owners first select the firearm they want to purchase either online or at a store. Then they must complete a series of checks. If the application is granted, they are allowed to make the purchase and pick up the weapon. The process can take just a few minutes.
“We must thank the government and the Saudi Falcons and Hunting Club for this opportunity. Now everyone can acquire weapons legally and much easier than in other countries,” she said.
— Joseph Hammond in Saudi Women Take Up Shooting After Gun Ownership Legalized