Riyadh: Saudi Arabia may introduce the subject of human rights in its educational syllabus for male and female students at all educational levels, a senior human rights official told Gulf News.

"The project is in its final stages at the ministry of higher education after it has been approved by the supreme authority [the king]," he said.

In a statement to Gulf News, Dr Zaid Al Hussain, deputy chairman of the Saudi Human Rights Commission (HRC), said the commission was trying to make human rights a subject in the educational syllabi at all general education levels in the Kingdom. "This is among the priorities of the commission," he added. According to Al Hussain, the commission would be supervising the process.

Women's freedom

"We provide consultation to the authorities about violations that may take place in our society regarding the rights of the society members in education, health and other sectors," he said.

Addressing the rights of Saudi women, Al Hussain said King Abdullah Bin Abdul Aziz has been leading the efforts to achieve a "qualitative leap" in women's freedoms in the Kingdom. "Saudi women now have full rights in any government department she goes to for her affairs," he said.

Speaking about the critical issue of Saudis who have no identity papers, Ebrahim Asiri, chairman of the East Province, said that cases of 30 children, half of them females, are being reviewed by the commission.

"Many families in Saudi Arabia suffer from this problem which is impeding children from joining schools or having medical treatment," he said.