Denmark bans full face veils

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Denmark has passed a ban on full-face veils.

It becomes the latest in a number of European countries to pass such a ban. This new ban mainly affects Muslim women wearing a niqab or burka.

The law was passed by 75 votes to 30 in parliament on Thursday and will come into force on 1 August.

Those violating the ban will be forced to pay 1,000 kroner ($NZ224), with fines ten times higher for repeat offenders.

The wording of the new legislation does not specifically mention Muslim women. It says that “anyone who wears a garment that hides the face in public will be punished with a fine”.

Speaking about the law, Denmark’s Justice Minister Søren Pape Poulsen said the ban was about Danish values.

Amnesty International has described the Danish vote as a “discriminatory violation of women’s rights”.

Where else in Europe has similar laws?
France was the first European country to ban the full-face veil in public places in April 2011.

It was followed a few months later by Belgium, which outlawed any clothing that obscures a person’s identity in a public place.

Full or partial bans have since been passed in Austria, Bulgaria and the southern German state of Bavaria.

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