Michelle Obama navigates limits on women in Saudi Arabia

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Obama, Barack and Michelle, visit Saudi Arabia for Abdullah
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Michelle Obama navigates limits on women in Saudi Arabia
President Barack Obama and first lady Michelle Obama board Air Force One at King Khalid International Airport, in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia, Tuesday, Jan. 27, 2015, after meeting with the new Saudi King, Salman bin Abdul Aziz to expresses condolences on the death of the late Saudi Arabian King Abdullah bin Abdulaziz al-Saud. The president and first lady are en route to Washington by way of Ramstein Air Base, Germany. (AP Photo/Carolyn Kaster)
President Barack Obama and first lady Michelle Obama participate in a delegation receiving line with new Saudi Arabian King, Salman bin Abdul Aziz, fith left, in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia, Tuesday, Jan. 27, 2015. The president and first lady have come to expresses their condolences on the death of the late Saudi Arabian King Abdullah bin Abdulaziz al-Saud. (AP Photo/Carolyn Kaster)
President Barack Obama and first lady Michelle Obama stand with new Saudi King Salman bin Abdul Aziz they arrive on Air Force One at King Khalid International Airport, in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia, Tuesday, Jan. 27, 2015. (AP Photo/Carolyn Kaster)
Saudi new King Salman (R) stands alongside US President Barack Obama (C) and First Lady Michelle Obama (2nd from L) after the Obamas arrived on Air Force One at King Khalid International Airport in Riyadh on January 27, 2015. Obama landed in Saudi Arabia to shore up ties with new King Salman and offer condolences after the death of his predecessor Abdullah. AFP PHOTO / SAUL LOEB (Photo credit should read SAUL LOEB/AFP/Getty Images)
President Barack Obama shakes hands with former Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice, center, as she greets Saudi Arabian King Salman bin Abdul Aziz, left, in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia, Tuesday, Jan. 27, 2015. The president, first lady, and a delegation came to expresses their condolences on the death of the late Saudi Arabian King Abdullah bin Abdulaziz al-Saud. (AP Photo/Carolyn Kaster)
Saudi new King Salman (R), US President Barack Obama (3rd from L) and First Lady Michelle Obama (3rd from R) hold a receiving line for delegation members at the Erga Palace in the capital Riyadh on January 27, 2015. Obama is in Saudi Arabia to shore up ties with new King Salman and offer condolences after the death of his predecessor Abdullah. AFP PHOTO / SAUL LOEB (Photo credit should read SAUL LOEB/AFP/Getty Images)
Saudi new King Salman (R), and US First Lady Michelle Obama (C) hold a receiving line for delegation members at the Erga Palace in the capital Riyadh on January 27, 2015. US President Barack Obama is in Saudi Arabia to shore up ties with new King Salman and offer condolences after the death of his predecessor Abdullah. AFP PHOTO / SAUL LOEB (Photo credit should read SAUL LOEB/AFP/Getty Images)
President Barack Obama and first lady Michelle Obama stand with new Saudi King Salman bin Abdul Aziz they arrive on Air Force One at King Khalid International Airport, in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia, Tuesday, Jan. 27, 2015. (AP Photo/Carolyn Kaster)
NEW DELHI, INDIA - JANUARY 27: U.S. President Barack Obama along with his wife Michelle Obama before leaving from India after their 3 days of visit here, at Palam airport, on January 27, 2015 in New Delhi, India. On a three-day visit to India, Obama was the Chief Guest at Republic Day celebrations on the invite of Prime Minister Narendra Modi. Before leaving India, today he spoke on the future of Indo-US ties and dwelt on the many features that bind the two countries together at Siri Fort Auditorium. (Photo by Arvind Yadav/Hindustan Times via Getty Images)
NEW DELHI, INDIA - JANUARY 27: U.S. President Barack Obama along with his wife Michelle Obama do a 'Namaste' before leaving from India after their 3 days of visit here, at Palam, on January 27, 2015 in New Delhi, India. On a three-day visit to India, Obama was the Chief Guest at Republic Day celebrations on the invite of Prime Minister Narendra Modi. Before leaving India, today he spoke on the future of Indo-US ties and dwelt on the many features that bind the two countries together at Siri Fort Auditorium. (Photo by Arvind Yadav/Hindustan Times via Getty Images)
Saudi new King Salman (C) walks alongside US President Barack Obama (2nd from L) and First Lady Michelle Obama (L) after the Obamas arrived on Air Force One at King Khalid International Airport in Riyadh on January 27, 2015. Obama landed in Saudi Arabia to shore up ties with new King Salman and offer condolences after the death of his predecessor Abdullah. AFP PHOTO / SAUL LOEB (Photo credit should read SAUL LOEB/AFP/Getty Images)
Saudi new King Salman (L) greets former US Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice (C), alongside US President Barack Obama, at the Erga Palace in the capital Riyadh on January 27, 2015. Obama is in Saudi Arabia to shore up ties with new King Salman and offer condolences after the death of his predecessor Abdullah. AFP PHOTO / SAUL LOEB (Photo credit should read SAUL LOEB/AFP/Getty Images)
Saudi new King Salman (R) meets with US President Barack Obama at the Erga Palace in the capital Riyadh on January 27, 2015. Obama is in Saudi Arabia to shore up ties with new King Salman and offer condolences after the death of his predecessor Abdullah. AFP PHOTO / SAUL LOEB (Photo credit should read SAUL LOEB/AFP/Getty Images)
Saudi new King Salman (R) walks alongside US President Barack Obama (C) and First Lady Michelle Obama after the Obamas arrived on Air Force One at King Khalid International Airport in Riyadh on January 27, 2015. Obama landed in Saudi Arabia to shore up ties with new King Salman and offer condolences after the death of his predecessor Abdullah. AFP PHOTO / SAUL LOEB (Photo credit should read SAUL LOEB/AFP/Getty Images)
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RIYADH, Saudi Arabia (AP) - For first lady Michelle Obama, just a few hours in Saudi Arabia were enough to illustrate the stark limitations under which Saudi women live.

Joining President Barack Obama for a condolence visit after the death of the King Abdullah, Mrs. Obama stepped off of Air Force One wearing long pants and a long, brightly colored jacket - but no headscarf.

Under the kingdom's strict dress code for women, Saudi females are required to wear a headscarf and loose, black robes in public. Most women in Saudi Arabia cover their hair and face with a veil known as the niqab. But covering one's head is not required for foreigners, and some Western women choose to forego the headscarf while in Saudi Arabia.

As a delegation of dozens of Saudi officials - all men - greeted the Obamas in Riyadh, some shook hands with Mrs. Obama. Others avoided a handshake but acknowledged the first lady with a nod as they passed by.

Saudi Arabia imposes many restrictions on women on the strict interpretation of Islamic Shariah (shah-REE'-yuh) law known as Wahhabism. Genders are strictly segregated. Women are banned from driving, although there have been campaigns in recent years to lift that ban. Guardianship laws also require women to get permission from a male relative to travel, get married, enroll in higher education or undergo certain surgical procedures.

See some of the more noteworthy fashions the first lady has worn in the United States below.

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Michelle Obama's most fashionable moments
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Michelle Obama navigates limits on women in Saudi Arabia
First lady Michelle Obama waves on Capitol Hill in Washington, Tuesday, Jan. 20, 2015, before President Barack Obama's State of the Union address before a joint session of Congress. (AP Photo/J. Scott Applewhite)
First lady Michelle Obama is applauded before President Barack Obama's State of the Union address during a joint session of Congress on Capitol Hill in Washington, Tuesday Feb. 12, 2013. Front row, from left are, Nathaniel Pendleton, Cleopatra Cowley-Pendleton, Mrs. Obama, Menchu Sanchez and Jill Biden. Second row, from left are, Oregon Gov. John Kitzhaber, Deb Carey, Apple CEO Tim Cook, Amanda McMillan, Lt. Brian Murphy and Marie Lopez Rogers. (AP Photo/Jacquelyn Martin)
WASHINGTON, DC - JANUARY 20: First lady Michelle Obama (2R) waves standing with (L-R) Carolyn Reed of Denver, Colorado, Astrid Muhammad of North Carolina, Anthony Mendez of Bronx, New York and Dr. Jill Biden prior to U.S. President Barack Obama's State of the Union speech before members of Congress of the U.S. Capitol January 20, 2015 in Washington, DC. Obama was expected to lay out a broad agenda including attempts to address income inequality and making it easier for Americans to afford college education and child care. (Photo by Mark Wilson/Getty Images)
Washington, DC - January 24: First Lady Michelle Obama waves to acknowledge applause as she joins her guests before President Barack Obama addresses a Joint Session of Congress while delivering his State of the Union speech, on January, 24, 2012 in Washington, DC. (Photo by Bill O'Leary/The Washington Post via Getty Images)
US First Lady Michelle Obama acknowledges applause pruior to US President Barack Obama's State of the Union Address before a joint session of Congress and the Supreme Court on January 25, 2011 on Capitol Hill in Washington, DC. AFP PHOTO / Nicholas KAMM (Photo credit should read NICHOLAS KAMM/AFP/Getty Images)
WASHINGTON, DC - DECEMBER 14: (L-R) U.S. President Barack Obama, First Lady Michelle Obama, and Rita Ora speak onstage at TNT Christmas in Washington 2014 at the National Building Museum on December 14, 2014 in Washington, DC. 25248_001_0620.JPG (Photo by Theo Wargo/WireImage)
US first lady Michelle Obama (L) and US President Barack Obama arrive for an event in the East Room of the White House December 7, 2014 in Washington, DC. Obama and the first lady welcomed recipients of the 37th Annual Kennedy Center Honors to the White House to celebrate their contributions to the arts. AFP PHOTO/Brendan SMIALOWSKI (Photo credit should read BRENDAN SMIALOWSKI/AFP/Getty Images)
WASHINGTON, DC - DECEMBER 08: President Barack Obama (R) and First Lady Michelle Obama arrive for a reception at the White House for the 2013 Kennedy Center Honorees on December 8, 2013 in Washington, DC. The honorees this year include: opera singer Martina Arroyo, jazz musician Herbie Hancock, musician Billy Joel, actress Shirley MacLaine and musician Carlos Santana. (Photo by Kristoffer Tripplaar-Pool/Getty Images)
US First Lady Michelle Obama and US President Barack Obama arrive during an event in the East Room of the White House December 2, 2012 in Washington, DC. Obama and US first lady Michelle Obama attended the event at the White House with the 2012 Kennedy Center Honorees before to celebrate their contribution to the arts before heading to the Kennedy Center for the honors program. AFP PHOTO/Brendan SMIALOWSKI (Photo credit should read BRENDAN SMIALOWSKI/AFP/Getty Images)
Washington, DC - December, 4: Guests arrive at the Kennedy Center for tonights honors awards with President Obama in attendance on December, 04, 2011 in Washington, DC. Pictured, First Lady Michelle Obama, right, and President Barack Obama, arrive in the Presidential box and greet the honorees including Yo Yo Ma, second left, and Meryl Streep, left. (Photo by Bill O'Leary/The Washington Post via Getty Images)
** ADVANCE FOR MONDAY, FEB. 16 AND THEREAFTER -- FILE ** In this Feb. 9, 2009 file photo, first Lady Michelle Obama models a handmade shawl she received from Director of Public Affairs for the Bureau of Indian Affairs Nedra Darling during an event at the Interior Department in Washington. Michelle Obama said it: Washington is her home now and she wants to get to know it. She is making the rounds, meeting federal workers at Cabinet departments, reading to children, chatting with teens, touring a neighborhood health center, and enjoying family night at the Kennedy Center. (AP Photo/Lawrence Jackson, File)
President Barack Obama and first lady Michelle Obama arrive at a reception for the recipients of the 2010 Kennedy Center Honors in the East Room of the White House in Washington, Sunday, Dec. 5, 2010. (AP Photo/Manuel Balce Ceneta)
President Barack Obama and first lady Michelle Obama stand with South Korean President Lee Myung-bak and first lady Kim Yoon-ok as they welcome them to a State Dinner at the White House in Washington, Thursday, Oct. 13, 2011. (AP Photo/Charles Dharapak)
First lady Michelle Obama and President Barack Obama react to the arrival of German Chancellor Angela Merkel at the North Portico of the White House in Washington,Tuesday, June 7, 2011, for the State Dinner. (AP Photo/Pablo Martinez Monsivais)
President Barack Obama and first lady Michelle Obama greet China's President Hu Jintao at the Grand Staircase as they arrive for a state dinner at the White House in Washington, Wednesday, Jan. 19, 2011. (AP Photo/Carolyn Kaster)
First lady Michelle Obama, left, plucks an eyelash from President Barack Obama as they wait to welcome Mexican President Felipe Calderon and his wife Margarita Zavala to the State Dinner at the North Portico of the White House in Washington, Wednesday, May 19, 2010. (AP Photo/Pablo Martinez Monsivais)
President Barack Obama and first lady Michelle Obama are seen before they welcome India's Prime Minister Manmohan Singh and his wife Gursharan Kaur to the State Dinner at the North Portico of the White House in Washington, Tuesday, Nov. 24, 2009. (AP Photo/Susan Walsh)
President Barack Obama joined by first lady Michelle Obama walk toward the East Room of the White House for entertainment following a dinner with the nation's governors in the State Dining Room, Sunday, Feb. 22, 2009, in Washington. (AP Photo/Haraz N. Ghanbari)
US President Barack Obama, First Lady Michelle Obama pose with French President Francois Hollande as he arrives for the State Dinner at the North Portico of the White House on February 11, 2014 in Washington, DC. AFP PHOTO/Mandel NGAN (Photo credit should read MANDEL NGAN/AFP/Getty Images)
First lady Michelle Obama, left, and President Barack Obama wait for the arrival of French President François Hollande for a State Dinner at the North Portico of the White House on Tuesday, Feb. 11, 2014, in Washington. (AP Photo/ Evan Vucci)
First Lady Michelle Obama walks away from the Grand Staircase after posing for the official photo with President Barack Obama with French President Francois Hollande as they arrive for a State Dinner at the White House in Washington, Tuesday, Feb. 11, 2014. (AP Photo/Pablo Martinez Monsivais)
First lady Michelle Obama, left, and President Barack Obama wait for the arrival of French President François Hollande for a State Dinner at the North Portico of the White House on Tuesday, Feb. 11, 2014, in Washington. (AP Photo/ Evan Vucci)
First lady Michelle Obama, left, and President Barack Obama welcome French President François Hollande for a State Dinner at the North Portico of the White House on Tuesday, Feb. 11, 2014, in Washington. Lauding the "enduring alliance" between the United States and France, President Barack Obama on Tuesday welcomed President Francois Hollande to the White House for a lavish state visit. The highly anticipated trip is taking place amid swirling speculation on both sides of the Atlantic about problems in Hollande's personal life. (AP Photo/ Evan Vucci)
First lady Michelle Obama, left, and President Barack Obama welcome French President François Hollande for a State Dinner at the North Portico of the White House on Tuesday, Feb. 11, 2014, in Washington. (AP Photo/ Pablo Martinez Monsivais)
President Barack Obama bows as he and first lady Michelle Obama, wearing a ruby colored chiffon and velvet Jason Wu gown, gets ready to dance as singer Jennifer Hudson, right, sings Al Green's "Let's Stay Together" at the Inaugural Ball at the Washington Convention Center during the 57th Presidential Inauguration in Washington, Monday, Jan. 21, 2013. (AP Photo/Charles Dharapak)
This combo image shows first lady Michelle Obama as she arrives at the Inaugural Ball in Washington on Jan. 21, 2009, left, and Jan. 21, 2013, right. Michelle Obama made it a fashion tradition Monday night, wearing a custom-made Jason Wu gown to the inaugural balls. The ruby-colored dress was a follow-up to the white gown Wu made for her four years ago when she was new to Washington, the pomp and circumstance, and the fashion press. (AP Photos/Jacquelyn Martin, Pablo Martinez Monsivais)
FILE - In this Jan. 21, 2013, file photo, President Barack Obama and Michelle Obama wave to guests after their dance at the Inaugural Ball at the 57th Presidential Inauguration in Washington. Michelle Obama has a new look, both in person and online, and with the president's re-election, she has four more years as first lady, too. The first lady is trying to figure out what comes next for this self-described "mom in chief" who also is a champion of healthier eating, an advocate for military families, a fitness buff and the best-selling author of a book about her White House garden. For certain, she'll press ahead with her well-publicized efforts to reduce childhood obesity and rally the country around its service members. (AP Photo/Paul Sancya, File)
President Barack Obama and first lady Michelle Obama walk in the parade during the 57th Presidential Inauguration in Washington, Monday, Jan. 21, 2013. (AP Photo/Charles Dharapak)
In this image released by the White House, first lady Michelle Obama greets David Hall, one of eight citizen co-chairs for the Inauguration, in the Diplomatic Reception Room of the White House in Washington, Thursday, Jan. 17, 2013. The photo is showing something different about Obama - bangs in her hair. (AP Photo/The White House, Lawrence Jackson)
** RETRANSMISSION FOR ALTERNATE CROP ** President Barack Obama and first lady Michelle Obama walk down Pennsylvania Avenue en route to the White House, Tuesday, Jan. 20, 2009, Washington. (AP Photo/Doug Mills, Pool)
LOS ANGELES, CA - JULY 16: First Lady Michelle Obama speaks onstage at the The Grammy Museum's Jane Ortner Education Award luncheon at The Grammy Museum on July 16, 2014 in Los Angeles, California. (Photo by Jason LaVeris/FilmMagic)
NEW YORK, NY - JULY 10: First Lady of the United States Michelle Obama onstage at the LULAC/NUVOtv Unity Luncheon With Jennifer Lopez at New York Hilton Midtown on July 10, 2014 in New York City. (Photo by Larry Busacca/Getty Images for NUVOtv)
UNITED STATES - SEPTEMBER 6: From left, first lady Michelle Obama, President Barack Obama, and their daughters Sasha and Malia, wave to the crowd following the President's speech at the Democratic National Convention at Time Warner Cable Arena in Charlotte, N.C., on Thursday, Sept. 6, 2012. (Photo By Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call)
President Barack Obama and First lady Michelle Obama wave to delegates after President Obama's speech to the Democratic National Convention in Charlotte, N.C., on Thursday, Sept. 6, 2012. (AP Photo/J. Scott Applewhite)
FILE - In this Sept. 4, 2012 file photo, first lady Michelle Obama waves to delegates at the Democratic National Convention in Charlotte, N.C. Obama's dress was designed by Tracy Reese. Obama has proven her fashion savvy time and time again since she was introduced to the country as first lady on Inauguration Day 2009. In the past four years she has adeptly walked the line between directional fashionista and everywoman. (AP Photo/Charles Dharapak, File)
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