Copenhagen, August 5: Danish police fined a 28-year-old woman for wearing a niqab in a shopping centre. It was the first such incident when a woman was or violating the country's law banning full-face Islamic veils in public places which came into effect on August 1. The woman was asked either to remove the veil or to leave the place. After this, she left the shopping complex.
police duty officer David Borchersen told the Ritzau news agency, “Police were called to a shopping centre in Horsholm, north of Copenhagen, where the woman had become involved in an altercation with another woman who had tried to tear her niqab off.” She wore the niqab again before the police arrived.
Police clicked a photograph of the woman wearing the niqab and also collected footage of the incident from the shopping complex. Police informed her that she would receive a fine of 1,000 kroner, about $156, in the mail. The cops also went through the footage obtained from the shopping complex to going through surveillance video to determine if the other woman deliberately ripped off the niqab.
From August 1, wearing a burqa, which covers a person's entire face, or the niqab, which only shows the eyes, in public carries a fine of 1,000 kroner. Repeated violations are fined up to 10,000 kroner. The ban also includes other accessories that hide the face such as balaclavas, masks and false beards. Human rights campaigners have slammed the ban as a violation of women's rights. The supporters of this ban are of the opinion the ban enables better integration of Muslim immigrants into Danish society. Belgium, France, Germany and Austria have also imposed bans or partial bans of full-face veils.
(With agency inputs)