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Woman fined after Denmark 'burka ban' comes into effect

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A woman has become the first person in Denmark to be charged with the offence of wearing a full-face veil.

The 28-year-old woman was fined by police after she got into a fight with a woman who allegedly tried to remove her niqab in a shopping centre north of Copenhagen.

The new law that bans full-face veils came into effect last week, it imposes a fine of 1,000 krones (£119) to anyone found wearing a full face garment in public.

Initial reports suggested that the woman had attempted to remove her niqab during the fight.

Police have since said after watching CCTV footage that her niqab fell off as a result of the fight. 

By the time police arrived at the scene of the scuffle, the woman who has not yet been idenitifed, had put her veil back on. 

The woman was handed the 1,000 krones fine and told either to remove her veil or leave the public space; she decided on the latter.

Later on that day, women wearing niqabs and burqas were joined by protestors wearing makeshift face veils in demonstrations in central Copenhagen. 

The police did not fine the women or the protestors, however, as those who wear face veils in peaceful protests are exempt from the law. 

There are several different types of Muslim headdress which women wear. They are worn to show modesty and to honour their religion. 

This is a guide to three types:

Hijab

This is a general term which refers to modesty, it comes from the Arabic word for veil and is also used to specifically refer to a scarf which covers the hair. 

Niqab 

A veil that covers the face and only shows the eyes.

Burka 

A full face and body covering which covers everything, including the eyes which are covered by a mesh screen.

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