Denmark fines woman $202 for wearing face veil

English Defence League supporters chant during a demonstration in Bradford city centre

English Defence League supporters chant during a demonstration in Bradford city centre

Denmark introduced a law on August 1 where people wearing a burqa, which covers a person's entire face, or a niqab, which only shows the eyes, while in public carries a fine of 1,000 kroner.

Police obtained CCTV footage of the incident.

Two days after Denmark's contentious burka law came into effect, a 28-year-old woman has become the first person in the country to be charged with breaching it.

The Associated Press reported Saturday that a woman wearing a niqab, a type of full-face veil worn by a minority of Muslim women in Denmark, was confronted by police at a shopping center in Horsholm, near Cophenhagen, and fined the equivalent of $156 for the infraction.

Police spokesperson David Borchersen said a fight broke out after the Muslim woman walked into the other woman, who tried to rip her face veil off, at the top of some escalators.

"During the fight her niqab came off, but by the time we arrived she had put it back on again", Borchersen said.

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After police were called, they found that she had been illegally wearing a niqab in public and - when she refused to remove it - she was issued a fine of 1,000 Danish kroner (£120).

Recently people of all ages also took to the streets in Copenhagen in protest of the controversial ban, wearing face veils including the niqab and full-length burqa.

The police took pictures of the woman for evidence.

The law itself does not mention burkas or niqabs by name, instead stating that "anyone who wears a garment that hides the face in public will be punished with a fine".

A year ago the European Court of Human Rights upheld a similar Belgian ban, saying that communal harmony trumped an individual's right to religious expression.

Supporters of the law, meanwhile, claim the law will better integrate Muslims into Danish society.

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