Women have been voting in municipal elections in Saudi Arabia for the first time. The 12 December vote means that Saudi Arabia is the second to last country in the world to allow women the right to vote for their leaders, behind Vatican City.

Voter Iman Al-Masharawi said, "It's my first time to elect in our country. Actually I am coming here to support one of my friends. We believe in her, we believe in her ideas and I want to put a point, that I am supporting someone. I believe in our future. I believe in our rules as a female supporting our country."

"I think the future will show that it is something we should start believing in, and the change has to come from inside," she added.

The election was also the first to allow women to stand for office in the country.

Polls on 29 November found that Among the 6,917 registered candidates for the election, 979 were women.

However, female candidates could face fines if they directly speak to male voters. "I think we are proceeding gradually in integrating the woman giving her all her rights to fully participate in the society," said female voter Alia Al-Bazi.

Men and women voted in separate polling stations across the country.