A lingerie Shop
An Arab man passes by an lingerie shop. Press Association

The government in Saudi Arabia has announced that it will implement the law which allows only women to work in female lingerie and apparel stores. The enactment comes into operation on January 5, reports the Associated Press.

The move is being opposed by top religious bodies.

The law was enacted in 2006 but it was never executed as clerics opposed that women and men should be allowed to share the same work space like in shops and markets.

Women in the Gulf country boycotted visiting lingerie shops where men were hired as salesman; this way they mounted pressure on the government to allow women to work.

The Commission for the Promotion of Virtue and Prevention of Vice, which interprets Islam in the country, does not allow any interaction between unrelated men and women. Interaction between men and women is restricted and monitored by such bodies.

Women can buy lingerie only when they are accompanied by male members of her family.

Some women are already working in the stores and over 28,000 women, mostly South Asian immigrant women are queuing up for jobs in lingerie stores, reports the Associated Press.

Thousands of men are likely to lose their jobs in lingerie stores when the law is fully implemented.