BERLIN, Feb. 2 (UPI) -- German Chancellor Angela Merkel opens a tour of four Arab countries on Saturday but she's reportedly not packing a headscarf.
Saudi law says that Saudi and foreign women may only appear in public wearing a headscarf and a long black garment. But, Germany's most powerful woman, who is following the lead of U.S. Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice, plans to appear in Riyadh with her hair uncovered -- and wearing a pants suit.
"The times have changed, foreign guests are not obliged to wear the headscarf any more," a Saudi journalist told Deutsche Welle.
While Saudi King Abdullah is a strict Muslim, his religion has not prevented him from shaking hands with female politicians from foreign countries, reportedly considered a radical gesture.