JEDDAH: A camel owned by a woman will compete in an official race in Saudi Arabia for the first time, a senior figure from the sport said on Friday.
Fahd bin Hithleen, chairman of the board of directors of the Saudi Camel Club and the newly appointed president of the International Camel Organization (ICO), said the race is part of the closing day of the King Abdul Aziz Camel Festival on the outskirts of Riyadh, which began on Feb. 5 and ends on March 23.
“The camel race will end this Saturday with the participation of the first female in camel racing,” Hithleen said on his official Twitter account. “I congratulate Princess Jamila Bint Abdulmajeed bin Saud bin Abdulaziz for breaking into the camel world and wish her all the success.”
The festival finale will take place in the presence of King Salman.
Princess Jamila said that camel racing is no longer exclusively the preserve of men, as the ongoing reforms in the country continue to empower Saudi women and open up new opportunities for them across the Kingdom.
The Kingdom established the ICO, the first global group of its kind for camels, on Thursday with the participation of representatives from 96 countries. Riyadh was chosen as the location for its headquarters and Hithleen was appointed to serve a five-year term as its first president.