allow me toe to start this Talk with a question to everyone.
You know that all over the world people fight for their freedom.
Fight for the rights.
Some battle oppressive governments, others battle oppressive societies.
Which battle do you think is harder?
Allow me to try to answer this question in the few coming minutes.
Let me take you back.
Two years ago in my life, it was a big time off.
My son are boarding.
He was five of the time.
After finishing his bedtime rituals, he looked at me and he asked a question.
Mommy, are we about people?
I was shocked.
Why do you say such things are booty?
That is a day I noticed some bruises on his face when he came from school.
He wouldn't tell me what happened.
He was ready to tell.
Two boys hit me today in school, they told me we saw your mom and Facebook.
You on Your mom should be put in jail.
I've never been afraid to tell a booty.
Been always proud woman off my achievements.
But those questioning guys are for my son.
Where my moment of truth.
When it all came together, you see, I'm aside the woman who being put to jail for driving a car in a country where women are not supposed to drive cars just for giving me his car keys.
My own brother was detained twice, and he was harassed to the point.
He had to quit her job as a geologist, leave the country with his wife and two year old son.
My father had to sit in a Friday sermon, listening to the imam, condemning condemning woman drivers and calling them prostitutes amongst tens off war supers.
Some of them are friends and family of my own father.
I was faced with organized defamation campaign in the local media, combined with false rumors, shirt and low in family gatherings, in the streets and in schools.
It will hit me.
It came into focus that those kids were not meant to be rude to my son.
They were just influenced by the adults around them, and it wasn't about me.
And it wasn't a punishment for taking the weed on driving a few miles.
It was a punishment for dating to challenge the society's rules.
But my story goes beyond this moment of truth of mine.
Allow me to give you a very briefing about my story.
It was May 2011 and it was complaining to a work colleague about the harassment I had to face trying to find a ride back home.
Although I have a car on international driver's license as long as they know, women in Saudi Arabia have been always complaining about the bank.
But it's been 20 years since anyone tried to do anything about it.
Ah, whole generation ago, he broke the good bad news in my face.
But there is no law banning you from driving.
I looked it up and he was right.
There was an actual law inside Arabia.
It was just a custom and traditions that are enshrined in rigid religious fatwa.
It's on important woman.
That realization ignited the idea off June 17 where we encouraged women to take the wheel and go drive.
It was a few weeks later recited.
Receiving all these men walls would rave you if you go on.
Dr Ah, courageous woman.
Her name is Leslie Heritage Society woman in the city of Jiddah.
She drove a car and she announced, but she didn't record a video.
We needed proof.
So I drove.
I pushed the video on YouTube on for my surprise.
It got hundreds of 1000 of use.
The first day will happen next.
I started receiving threats to be killed, raped just to stop this campaign.
The Saudi authorities remained very quiet.
That really creeped us out.
I wasn't a campaign with other Saudi woman and even mid activists.
We wanted to know how the authorities well, response on the actual day, June 17 with women go out and drive.
So this time I asked my brother to come with me on drive by a police car.
It went fast, were arrested, sign a plate not to drive again.
Released, Arrested again.
He was sent to detention for one day and I was sent to jail.
I wasn't sure why I was sent there because it didn't face any charges in the interrogation.
But what I was sure off my innocents I didn't break a law on I kept my abaya.
It's Ah, black clock.
We were in Saudi Arabia before we leave the house on.
My fellow prisoners kept asking me to take it off, but I was so sure of my innocents I kept saying No, I'm leaving today.
Outside the jail, the whole country went into a frenzy, some attacking me badly on others, supportive and even collecting signatures for a petition to be sent to the king to release me.
I was released after nine days.
June 17 comes.
The streets were packed with police.
Cars are religious police cars, but some 100 brave side.
The woman broke the ban on drove that day.
None were arrested.
We broke the double.
So I think by now everyone knows that we can drive or women are not allowed to drive in Saudi Arabia.
But maybe few knows why.
Allow me to help me answer this question.
There was this official study that was presented to the Shura Council.
It's the Consul Tate of Council appointed by the king in Saudi Arabia, and it was done by a local professor university professor.
He claims it's done based on a UNESCO study.
Understudy states the percentage off rape, adultery, illegitimate Children, even drug abuse.
Prostitution in countries with women drive is higher than countries would warrant on.
I was like this.
I was shocked.
I was like, we're the last country in ward with women don't drive.
So if you look at the map of the world, the only leaves two countries Saudi Arabia and the other society is the rest of the world.
We started a hashtag on Twitter mark in the study and he made headlines around the world.
Yeah, and only then we realize it's so empowering to mark your oppressor.
It strips it away off the strongest weapon fear.
This system is based on ultra conservative traditions and customs deal with moment as they are inferior, and they need a guardian to protect them.
So they need to take permission from this garden with verbal or written.
All the lights were minors until the day we die and it becomes worse when it's in tried in religious fatwas based on wrong interpretation of the Sharia law or the religious laws.
What's worst when they become prettified us walls in the system on when woman themselves, belief in the infinity and they even fight those who try to question these rules.
So for me, it wasn't only about these attacks they had to face, it was about living two totally different perception of my personality of my person, the villain back in my home country and the heater outside.
Just to tell you two stories happened in the last two years.
One of them is when I was in jail.
I'm pretty sure when I was in jail everyone so titles in the international media, something like this.
During these nine days, it was injured.
But in my home country it was a totally different picture.
It was more like this Manila.
She faces charges of disturbing public order and inciting woman to drive.
I know Manila Sharif withdraws from the campaign.
This is my favorite Manila sheriff breaks down and confesses Foreign forces incited me and it goes on even try, allow and flogging me in public.
So it started a different picture.
I was asked last year to give a speech in also Freedom Forum.
I was surrounded by this love on supportive people around me on they looked at me as an expression the same time a few back to my home country.
They hated that speed so much the way they call it a betrayal to the side country on society people.
And they even started a hashtag called also traitor on Twitter.
Some 10,000 tweets were written in that hashtag, while the opposite hashtag also hero there was like handful of tweets written even started a poll.
More than 13,000 voters answered this poll, whether they considered me trader or not.
After that speech, 90% said Yes, she's a traitor.
So it's these two totally different perception off my personality for me.
I'm a proud, tidy woman, and I do love my country and because I love my country.
I'm doing this because I believe a society would not be free if woman off that society are not free.
Thank you, but you Lane listens from thes things that happened to you.
I learned to be always there.
The first thing I got out of jail.
Of course, it's After I took a shower, I went online.
I opened my Twitter account on my Facebook page on have been always very respectful to those people who are opening to me.
I would listen to what they say, and I would never defend myself with act with words.
Only I would use actions.
When they said that we draw from the Camp A, I filed the first lawsuit against the General Directorate Off Traffic Police for not issuing me a driver's license.
There are a lot of people also very big, supportive, like those 3000 people who signed the petition to release me like the recent a petition to the Shura Council in favour off lifting the ban on side a woman and there were like 3500 citizens believes in that and they signed that petition.
They're people like that.
I just showed some sambal were amazing who are believing in women's rights in Saudi Arabia on trying, and they're also facing a lot of hate because off speaking up on voicing their views, Saudi Arabia today is taken small steps toward enhancing women's right.
The shorter council that's appointed by the king by royal decree from King Abdullah last year, there were 30 woman assigned to that council, like 20% 20% off the council the same time.
Finally, that council, after rejecting our petition four times for women driving, they finally accepted it last February after being sent to jail or since his lodging or sent to a trial.
The spokesperson off the traffic police said We will only issue traffic violation for women drivers.
The grand mufti who is the head off the religious establishment in Saudi Arabia, he said it's not recommended for women to drive used to be Haram, forbidden by the previous Grand mufti.
So for me, it's not about Onley.
These small steps is about women themselves.
A friend ones asked me, she said.
So what do you think this woman driving will happen?
I told her on Lee, If women stopped asking win and take action to make it now.
So it's not only about the system is also about us women to drive our own life.
I take so I have no clue really, how I become an activist?
I'm I don't know how I became one now, but all I know on all I'm sure off in the future with someone asking moment, Ask me my story.
I will say I'm proud to be amongst those woman who lived the ban for the bag and celebrated everyone's freedom.
So the question I started my talk with who do you think is more difficult to face person, governments or perceive societies?
I hope you find clues to answer that from my speech.