The capital is Riyadh and is also the largest city. The official language of the country is Arabic. Saudi Arabia has a population of roughly 28 million with 9 million being foreign nationals. The country of Saudi Arabia is full of dignified and hospitable people. Much of their lifestyle is governed by Sharia Law because the country is an exclusively Islamic kingdom and Islam governs nearly every aspect of life. It governs everything from how they dress, to social gatherings, schooling, and human rights have all been influenced by Sharia Law.
Saudi Arabia has a monarchal government where King Abdullah bin Abd al-Aziz Al Saud rules over the Saudi kingdom. He is also the commander in chief of the military. He has an appointed crown prince who is the king’s second command. He is advised The Kingdom is a sovereign Arab Islamic State. All aspects of the country in a political sense are governed by its religion. Its constitution is Almighty God’s Book, The Holy Qur’an, and the Sunna (Traditions) of the Prophet (Saudiembassy. net). When the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia was first established, education was really only meant for the children of families in the rich class.
That thought has changed and education was expanded greatly however, only local and naturalized Arabs are allowed to attend these schools (expatarrivals. com). The kingdom’s university was founded in 1975, called King Saud University, located in Riyadh (mapsofworld. com). Currently around 25,000 school, and 11 universities have been established in the kingdom. The universities are not one note schools, but teach a variety of arts and sciences. They have universities and college that have an emphasis on English, Agricultural, and Technological studies. Statistics taken in 2009 show the youth literacy rate is 97. % and total adult literacy rate is at 86. 13% (indexmundi. com).
Men have a slightly higher literacy than the women do. The kingdom also has a universal healthcare coverage. The healthcare system is supervised by the Ministry of Health. They currently operate 62% of hospitals, and 53% of the clinics and specialized centers. They have one tier that is for the hospitals and doctor’s offices in urban areas, and another tier for healthcare centers and clinics that provide preventive, prenatal, emergency, and basic services, as well as mobile clinics for remote rural area (hziegler. com).
Since 1970 onwards, the transformation of health care in Saudi Arabia has been remarkable with 350 hospitals being built by the end of 2005. There is a birth rate of 21. 8, and a death rate of 3. 8 per 1000 people (indexmundi. com). They have a life expectancy of 74 years on average. Even though Saudis are dignified and hospitable people, the work and social life are divided by sex. Men are seen as being superior to women. They dress conservatively in public. Women wear an abaya, which is a black cloak, and a hair cover. Men are prohibited from wearing shorts in public. Showing less skin is better for them.
In the home, they eat in different circles, and the women are supposed to be seen but not heard. Men are awarded more privileges, and more freedoms than the women in Saudi Arabia. Up until last year, there were some very strict restrictions on women and government. It was just decided last year that women will now be allowed to vote, run for office, and can be appointed to the to the consultative assembly. With that being said, there is still sexism among these changes. Female lawyers can now represent women in family cases, but regardless, the testimony of two women equal that of one man.
It is also illegal for a woman drive in Saudi Arabia. Even though the Saudis may be seen as hospitable and dignified, that does not stop the government from censoring their people. It is believed that they have placed heavy restrictions on the freedoms of speech, press, peaceful assembly, religion, and association. Television and radio broadcasting is regulated by the Ministry of Information. Criticism of the government or the royal family is frowned upon, and some press statements have been dismissed because of what were seen as anti-government, or anti-religious remarks. It is illegal to practice religions other than Islam in the country.