Saudi Arabia called Princess Haifa al-Mogrin as its representative to UNESCO, an unusual female visit to a global body, as the ultraconservative country works to revamp its image.
The announcement came on Wednesday, practically a year after the kingdom appointed its first female ambassador to the United States, Princess Rima bint Bandar.
” King Salman has approved the delegation of Prince Haifa as long-term agent to UNESCO,” the United Country’s cultural agency, the main Saudi Press Agency stated Wednesday.
Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman has been on a modernisation drive, seeking to project a moderate, business-friendly image to enhance investment and assistance diversify the economy far from oil.
Saudi Arabia just recently eased restrictions on females – consisting of allowing them to drive and receive passports and travel abroad without authorization from male relatives.
Under de facto ruler Crown Prince Mohammed, it has likewise opened the country to sporting, cultural and home entertainment occasions.
As part of the reforms, the oil-rich kingdom, which has 5 UNESCO World Heritage websites, is likewise working to grow its tourism sector.
It announced in September it would use tourist visas for the very first time, relaxing guidelines that had mainly restricted sees to organisation travellers and Muslim pilgrims.
But Riyadh has also dealt with intense diplomatic fallout over the murder of dissident journalist Jamal Khashoggi, who was eliminated and dismembered in the kingdom’s consulate in Istanbul in 2018.
Saudi Arabia has actually likewise been criticised for mounting a crackdown on dissidents, including prominent preachers and intellectuals.
In 2018, authorities detained at least a dozen female activists, the majority of whom were detained in a comprehensive crackdown prior to the historical lifting of the decades-old ban on female drivers.
Many of the women have accused interrogators of sexual harassment and abuse while in custody. Saudi authorities rejected the allegations.