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Saudi security forces on parade.
Al Jazeera English/Flickr
Girls & Women

Saudi Women Can Now Join the Military for the First Time Ever

New career paths are slowly opening up to women in Saudi Arabia.

In the last year, the slight relaxation of the country’s male guardianship laws and restrictions on women mean that Saudi women can now open businesses without a man’s permission, can work as Uber drivers, and at airports and border crossings.

On Monday, the Saudi government announced that women would be allowed to join its military for the first time ever, adding one more option to that list, according to the BBC.

The move to begin recruiting female soldiers represents a step toward greater gender equality in the country, but not all military roles available to men will be available to women and women will have to meet different requirements.

Take Action: Sign this petition to #LeveltheLaw and empower girls and women around the world!

Combat positions will not be open to women, the BBC reported

Under the male guardianship system, a woman will still need the consent of her male guardian — usually her husband or a male relative — to apply for a position in the military, or any other job. And both she and her male guardian must live in the province that her military post would be in, the BBC reported

Unlike men, who can volunteer to serve at age 17, women hoping to join the military must be between the ages of 25 and 35 and be of “good weight to height ratio,” according to the Saudi Gazette. Female applicants will also have to pass an acceptance test, a medical check up, and a personal interview.

Read more: 2017 Was A Good Year for Saudi Women, But There’s Still A Long Way to Go

Even with these requirements and limitations, if recent responses to increased job options for women are any indication, the Saudi military should anticipate a large number of applications.

In January, the government received more than 100,000 applications for just 140 jobs at airports and border crossings that it opened up to women showing that Saudi women are eager for opportunities to work.

Read more: Saudi Arabia Opened 140 Jobs Up to Women And Their Response Was Overwhelming

Global Citizen campaigns to #LeveltheLaw to change gender discriminatory policies around the world. You can take action here to help ensure that women are seen as equals in the eyes of the law.