Saudi Arabia allows women to join its Border Guards

Kingdom steps up female recruitment in the security sector

Saudi policewomen take part in a military parade for the first time on National Day in Riyadh in September. AFP
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Women in Saudi Arabia can now register to join the Border Guards unit at the rank of private, the kingdom’s Interior Ministry said on Thursday.

The move comes as part of the kingdom’s move to increase the number of women in government and private sector roles.

The changes are part of the kingdom's Vision 2030, which seeks to reform almost every aspect of life and government, including the empowerment of women.

Saudi Arabia opened posts in the military to women for the first time in February last year.

Applicants for the Border Guards roles must be Saudi, aged from 25 to 35, must not have a criminal record and must meet the required qualifications.

Applications will be open from Saturday to Thursday, March 26 to 31, via the kingdom's Absher portal.

Women now have the opportunity to join the army, royal air defence, the navy, the royal Saudi strategic missile forces and the medical services of the armed forces.

Their ranks can range from private to sergeant.

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Last September, Saudi Arabia's first female recruits graduated from the Armed Forces Women's Cadre Training Centre, the first time in the kingdom's history that women will begin service in frontline roles.

Women have been part of public security in the kingdom since 2019, in the General Directorate of Prisons, Criminal Evidence and Customs, and the General Directorate of Narcotics.

Saudi Arabia plans to invest more than $10 billion in the military industry over the next decade, the governor of the General Authority for Military Industries said last year.

The country will also spend the same amount on military research and development.

Updated: March 25, 2022, 10:31 AM