iOS app Android app

Sabria Jawhar
Sabria Jawhar is a columnist and former Jeddah bureau chief for the English-language daily newspaper Saudi Gazette in Jeddah, Saudi Arabia. She also writes weekly for and is a consultant for Western media covering Saudi Arabia inside the Kingdom.

She is considered one of the leading female journalists in Saudi Arabia. Her news beats included the ministries of Foreign Affairs and Interior and was among only a handful Saudi women to specialize in terrorism coverage during the extremist attacks in Saudi Arabia from 2003 to 2006.

In 2005, she earned a Fellowship at the Korean Press Foundation and Yonsei Communication Research Institute in Seoul, South Korea. In 2007 she was a panelist in the United Nations 15th International Media Seminar on Peace in the Middle East in Tokyo, Japan. She also was a panelist at the Second Saudi Female Media Conference in Riyadh in 2007.

Her columns can also be found at her website and at

Entries by Sabria Jawhar

Moammar Gaddafi's Death May Bring Tribal Warfare Before Democracy

(21) Comments | Posted October 27, 2011 | 3:17 PM

The question of whether Moammar Gaddafi deserved to die following his Oct. 20 capture and the startling revelations that he may have been sodomized raises troubling issues for Muslims. Do we celebrate the death of a despot or should we set aside our joy to consider that Gaddafi's enemies violated...

Read Post

Saudi Women Owe Voting Rights to Arab Spring

(6) Comments | Posted September 26, 2011 | 9:55 AM

To say that Saudi King Abdullah's decree to give women the right to vote and become Shoura Council members is a historic moment would be an understatement. The women's suffrage movement is only part of the story.

To celebrate our victory to cast ballots in municipal elections and...

Read Post

Saudi Women's Driving Ban Rises to Critical Rights Issue

(85) Comments | Posted May 26, 2011 | 4:38 PM

There was a time when I firmly believed the endless debate about Saudi women banned from driving cars was trivial. It distracted Saudis from the real problems of the denial of women's rights: employment, education, guardianship abuses, inheritance, and fair and equitable treatment in the Saudi judicial system.


Read Post

Starting a Saudi Revolution Without Revolutionaries

(9) Comments | Posted March 2, 2011 | 10:09 AM

Sometimes people are so hopeful about the prospect of more bloodshed spilled in the Middle East that they resort to stretching the truth to further their agenda. There is the thinking along conventional lines that if Tunisia, Egypt and Libya fall, then so must Bahrain and Saudi Arabia.

The jury...

Read Post

The Violent Rhetoric of Saudi Arabia's Imams

(18) Comments | Posted January 25, 2011 | 8:15 AM

As American politicians debate whether violent rhetoric contributed to the attempted assassination of Arizona Rep. Gabrielle Giffords and the slayings of six people, a similar debate is underway in Saudi Arabia.

There is a rising chorus among religious scholars demanding that imams put an end to supplications against non-Muslims. Supplications...

Read Post

The Idiocy of the Anti-Sharia Crowd

(963) Comments | Posted October 19, 2010 | 10:25 AM

For those following the idiotic allegations that Sharia is creeping into American society and wonder who speaks for Islam, I think the answer is obvious. Western extremists are now the new hijackers of Islam. They have adopted the language of Islamic terrorists, interpreted the teachings of the Prophet Muhammad (peace...

Read Post

In Saudi Arabia, a Women's Ministry Might Be a Small Step Towards Women's Rights

(2) Comments | Posted October 5, 2010 | 11:29 AM

The talk of establishing a Ministry of Women's Affairs in Saudi Arabia raises exciting possibilities for Saudi women, particularly businesswomen who need unfettered access to the international business community. Yet the proposal could lead to further marginalization of Saudi women.

The idea of a governmental women's department may sound quaint...

Read Post

Why I Hate the Burqa -- And Yes, I Wear One

(122) Comments | Posted August 4, 2010 | 1:43 PM

Revisiting issues that I previously have written about is not something I do often, but I'm making an exception to return to the West's most beloved human rights cause: Banning the burqa.

I last wrote about pending legislation to ban burqas in Europe more than a year ago when France...

Read Post

The Needless Death of a Saudi Woman

(32) Comments | Posted June 8, 2010 | 3:30 PM

In Saudi Arabia common sense often takes a holiday.

Last month an incident occurred at the Teachers' Education College in Qassim. As usual, press reports are sketchy, but the facts as we know them are all too familiar.

It seems a young female student reportedly fell ill at the college...

Read Post

How the Media Fans the Flames of Western Extremism

(0) Comments | Posted June 2, 2010 | 6:31 PM

The other night I was sitting at home minding my own business when I came across Al Jazeera English's "Inside Iraq" program online. There for the world to see was an American describing Arabs as "barbarians" and Islam a "crazy ideology." President Bush, he said, courageously "planted some flowers" of...

Read Post

Taking Offense to Saudi Arabia's 'Reform Offensive'

(0) Comments | Posted March 31, 2010 | 1:26 AM

The Jerusalem Post, in its infinite wisdom, published the other day an opinion column by Seth Frantzman who complained that reform in Saudi Arabia was "offensive." Yes, reform is offensive to all good people.

No, wait. I got it wrong. Frantzman actually was whining about Saudi Arabia's "reform...

Read Post

Women-Only Bus Proposal is the New Tool to Keep Saudi Women From Driving

(12) Comments | Posted March 11, 2010 | 10:17 AM

It never ceases to amaze me the goofiness of some people who feel they must find a creative way to deal with the "Saudi women's driving problem."

Instead of a coherent approach to the issue of Saudi women driving, like, say, give them a driver's license and set them loose...

Read Post

Saudi Flogging of Spoiled Brat Only Part of the Story

(6) Comments | Posted January 27, 2010 | 9:25 AM

Things are getting a little out of hand in Jubail, Saudi Arabia. Apparently a public girls school is at the center of an international uproar over the lashing and prison sentence of a young woman found guilty of assaulting the school's headmistress.

Originally it was reported in the media that...

Read Post

Al-Qaeda, Not the US, Is Responsible for My Loss of Privacy and Dignity at the Airport

(25) Comments | Posted January 6, 2010 | 2:06 PM

It doesn't surprise me that the United States has put Saudi Arabia on the "countries of interest" list for passengers flying out of the Kingdom.

In the wake of the failed terrorist attack at the Detroit Metro Airport on Dec. 25, the US placed Saudi Arabia and 13 other countries...

Read Post

Passive European Muslims Partially To Blame for Swiss Minaret Ban

(95) Comments | Posted December 2, 2009 | 10:59 AM

What does Europe want from the Muslim community?

Well, you got me.

Like a party host who complains that her country cousins aren't mingling with the guests, and then seats them at the children's table at dinnertime, Switzerland, Denmark, and France can't make up their mind about the so-called "Muslim...

Read Post

Judicial Reform Puts Saudi Women Lawyers in a Position of All Show and No Play

(2) Comments | Posted November 19, 2009 | 3:40 PM

About 10 years ago Saudi women started returning home from abroad with fresh law degrees and were ready to take on the world. And they are still waiting. Last week, the Minister of Justice, Muhammad Al Eisa, announced that Saudi judicial system will "eventually" make way for female lawyers to...

Read Post

Saudis Try to Put an End to Crazy Fatwas

(6) Comments | Posted November 11, 2009 | 11:14 AM

Nearly a year after Saudi King Abdullah warned religious scholars that issuing careless fatwas gives extremists credibility as religious experts, the Ministry of Islamic Affairs, Call, Guidance and Endowment has finally said enough is enough.

Recently the Ministry issued a memo that fatwas were not to be issued to just...

Read Post

Lebanese News Station's Cowardice in Sex Braggart Scandal Makes Saudi Female Journalist the Scapegoat

(17) Comments | Posted October 28, 2009 | 4:16 PM

Something got lost in all the outrage last week over the conviction and lashing sentence of the 22-year-old Saudi woman journalist who worked for the Lebanese Broadcasting Corp (LBC). What exactly is the LBC doing to support their journalist?

The answer is absolutely nothing.

According to a Reuters report this...

Read Post

Saudi Religious Police Clamp Down on Rural Women Drivers

(18) Comments | Posted October 15, 2009 | 4:21 PM

Perhaps one of the most misunderstood aspects of Saudi society in the non-Arab world is the myth that all Saudi women are banned from driving cars. Read any English-language news periodical and the message is absolute: It's illegal for Saudi women to drive.

Well, that's kinda-sorta-usually-but-not-always true.

For decades, Saudi...

Read Post

Saudis in Denial Over Scope of Violence Against Women And Children

(7) Comments | Posted October 7, 2009 | 1:08 PM

It came as something of a shock when I learned the other day that the number of domestic violence cases in Saudi Arabia does not exceed 650.

What a relief to live in a country where violence against women and children is virtually non-existent. This good news comes from none...

Read Post