Saudi Arabia was ranked as the fifth most dangerous country for women. The conservative kingdom was named the second worst country in terms of economic access and discrimination which includes job discrimination, discriminatory property rights, and an inability to make a livelihood. It came fifth in terms of the risks women face from cultural, religious and traditional practices, and seventh regarding non-sexual violence including domestic abuse.
Saudi Arabia has made headlines in recent years for moves to boost female participation in the workforce from the current 19 percent and for lifting a decades-long ban on women driving. But customary gender segregation in most workplaces still limits the way in which women can be employed and a guardianship law by which women need permission from a male relative to travel abroad, marry and other activities remains in place. Saudi Arabia has come under international fire in recent months for the arrest and jailing of some women’s rights activists.