Saudi Arabia bans the abaya in exam halls

School uniforms to be worn by female students

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A Saudi government establishment has banned the abaya in exam halls.

The Saudi Education and Training Evaluation Commission – responsible for accrediting educational and training systems, along with the Ministry of Education – announced that female students will not be allowed to wear the abaya during exams.

The ETEC said that female students should now wear school uniforms inside exam halls, adding that all clothing should adhere to public decency regulations.

In 2018, it was announced that the abaya would no longer be legally enforced, although a number of women in the kingdom continue to wear them.

Traditionally black, more colourful abayas, in light blues and pinks, are also worn by women across the Gulf.

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Updated: December 19, 2022, 6:18 AM