A Saudi sheikh has warned women that driving could affect their ovaries and pelvises.
Women are currently banned from driving in Saudi Arabia and many have protested against the statute.
However, Sheikh Salah al-Luhaydan has warned them that their health could be at risk if they get behind the wheel.
He told Saudi news website sabq.org: ‘[Driving] could have a reverse physiological impact.
‘Physiological science and functional medicine studied this side [and found] that it automatically affects ovaries and rolls up the pelvis.
‘This is why we find for women who continuously drive cars their children are born with clinical disorders of varying degrees.’
The comments come two years after a ‘scientific’ report claimed that relaxing the ban would also see more Saudis – both men and women – turn to homosexuality and pornography.
The startling conclusions were drawn in 2011 at the Majlis al-Ifta’ al-A’ala, Saudi Arabia’s highest religious council, working in conjunction with Kamal Subhi, a former professor at the King Fahd University.
Their report assessed the possible impact of repealing the ban in Saudi Arabia, the only country in the world where women are not allowed behind the wheel.
It was delivered to all 150 members of the Shura Council, the country’s legislative body.
The report warned that allowing women to drive would ‘provoke a surge in prostitution, pornography, homosexuality and divorce’.
Within ten years of the ban being lifted, the report’s authors claimed, there would be ‘no more virgins’ in the Islamic kingdom.
And it pointed out ‘moral decline’ could already be seen in other Muslim countries where women are allowed to drive.
In the report Professor Subhi described sitting in a coffee shop in an unnamed Arab state.
‘All the women were looking at me,’ he wrote. ‘One made a gesture that made it clear she was available… this is what happens when women are allowed to drive.’
Women in Saudi Arabia have not been permitted to drive since the establishment of the state in 1932.
Hundreds of women have protested against the law – with several facing punishment after the got behind the wheel.
Shaima Jastaniya, 34, was sentenced to 10 lashes with a whip after being caught driving in Jeddah in 2011.
Another woman was stopped by a police patrol after driving six miles to collect her husband near their home in the town of Buraida.
As her ‘legal guardian’ her husband had to sign a declaration that he would not let his wife drive again.
One woman took to the roads for four days non-stop in an act of frustrated defiance.
Housewife and mother Najla al-Hariri drove around the streets of the Red Sea city of Jeddah back in 2011 ‘to defend her belief that Saudi women should be allowed to drive.’
She said: ‘I don’t fear being arrested because I am setting an example that my daughter and her friends are proud of.’
She added that it was ridiculous she is not allowed to drive in her own country, despite the fact that she is an experienced driver, having driven for five years in Egypt and another five years in Lebanon.
At the time the mother was also offering driving lessons to women.
However, the protests sometimes end in tragedy.
A young woman driver and three of her passengers were killed after she defied the kingdom’s ban on women motorists.
The woman, who was in her 20s, had been driving a 4X4 with nine girlfriends on Saturday night in the capital, Riyadh, in an open area often used by young men in car races.
Four of the women were killed when the vehicle overturned. The remaining six were injured and taken to a nearby hospital.