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April 17, 2014

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Female death on campus spurs Saudi debate

Updated Thursday, Feb. 6, 2014 | 8:46 a.m.

RIYADH, Saudi Arabia (AP) — A Saudi newspaper says university staff in Riyadh would not allow paramedics who arrived at the scene to immediately enter a female-only area of the campus to assist a student who suffered a heart attack and later died.

Okaz newspaper reported on Thursday that administrators impeded efforts by the male paramedics to save the student's life at the King Saud University. The paper says staff took an hour before allowing the paramedics in on Wednesday.

The death spurred thousands of online comments about the country's strict segregation of the sexes.

But the university's rector, Badran Al-Omar, denied the report, saying there was no hesitation in letting the paramedics in. He says the university did all it could to save the life of the student, who was identified as Amna Bawazeer.