saudi arabia's ambassador to the United States prince Khalid bin Salman speaking to reporters on Tuesday after the kingdom announced it would permit women to drive, said the decision was not just a major social change but part of the country's economic reforms.

"I think our leadership understands our society is ready," Prince Khalid bin Salman said.

He said women would not need to get permission from a legal guardian to get a license and would not need a guardian in the car when they drive.