Maha Al Muneef

Saudi Arabian activist

Maha Al Muneef (Arabic:  مها عبدالله المنيف) is a pediatrician from Saudi Arabia. She specializing in infectious diseases in children. Al-Muneef won an International Women of Courage Award in 2014.[1][2]

Maha Al Muneef with U.S. President Barack Obama in Riyadh, 2014


Shura CouncilEdit

From 2009 to 2013, Al Muneef was a member of Saudi Arabia's Shura Council. [3][4]

The National Family Safety ProgramEdit

[5] Maha Al Muneef is the executive director of the National Family Safety Program (NFSP) in Saudi Arabia. [6]Al Muneef worked to spread knowledge about domestic violence and child abuse. The NFSP was created in 2005 in order to combat domestic violence and child abuse in Saudi Arabia. The NFSP started support programs, gave information about the numbers of attacks on women and children in Saudi Arabia, and worked to help people who were attacked or hurt.[2]

The "Protection from Abuse" lawEdit

In August 2013, the Council of Ministers of Saudi Arabia passed a new law to protect people who are attacked or hurt by members of their own family.[7] Al Muneef and the NFSP helped to write the "Protection from Abuse" law. The law describes and explains the meaning of domestic violence and makes it illegal in Saudi Arabia for the first time.[2]


In 2014, Maha Al Muneef received the International Women of Courage Award.[1][2]

U.S. President Obama presents award in RiyadhEdit

The US President Barack Obama presented the award to Al Muneef during his visit to Riyadh on March 29, 2014. [1] Al-Muneer could not be at the March 4 ceremony in the United States for family health reasons. She received the award in a private ceremony at the Ritz Carlton hotel, where Obama stayed. Obama spoke about the importance of women's rights in Saudi Arabia, and the importance of helping the Saudi king understand this importance. Obama told Al-Muneef he was “so very, very proud of you and grateful for all the work you’re doing here." He added, “I’m looking forward to seeing you do even more wonderful things in the future.” [2]


  1. 1.0 1.1 "2014 International Women of Courage Award Winners - International Women of Courage Celebration".
  2. 2.0 2.1 2.2 2.3 "Bios of 2014 Award Winners".
  3. Stearns, Scott. "US Honors International Women of Courage".
  4. "Ukrainian Euromaidan volunteer receives State Department's International Women of Courage Award".
  5. Sheila Carapico (1 April 2014). "Patronizing Women". Middle East Research and Information Project. Retrieved 5 March 2015.
  6. Susan McPherson. "Dr. Maha al-Muneef - In Photos: Women Changing the World: Public Policy". Forbes.
  7. Joe Stork (2013-09-03). "Saudi Arabia: New Law to Criminalize Domestic Abuse". Human Rights Watch. Retrieved 2015-03-05.

Other websitesEdit