Women appointed to Saudi's Shoura Council committees

Saudi Arabia’s Shoura Council, a government advisory body, has appointed four women as vice-chairpersons of committees, increasing their number from three.

Haya Al Munea will help lead the Social Affairs, Family and Youth Committee, while Zainab Abu Taleb has been appointed to the Cultural and Information Affairs Committee, Huda Al Hulaisi will join the Foreign Affairs Committee and Muna Al Mushait will be on the Health Affairs and Environment Committee.

Women were only given the right to become a member of the council in January, 2013, under a royal decree from King Abdullah that granted women 30 seats – or one-fifth of the 150 seats - on the council.

The female members must be committed to strict Shariah law and be veiled.

The Shoura Council has limited powers and can only propose legislation, which must be vetted by King Abdullah.