STOCKHOLM Denmarks controversial ban on the Islamic full-face veil in public spaces came into force on Wednesday as women protested the new measure which fines anyone wearing the garment.
Human rights campaigners have slammed the ban as a violation of womens rights, while supporters argue it enables better integration of Muslim immigrants into Danish society.
Protests against the ban were planned in the capital Copenhagen and the second-biggest city Aarhus late on Wednesday, with several hundred people expected to attend, some of them wearing the full-face veil.
A spokesman for the Copenhagen police said they did not plan to fine the protesters who violated the ban.
Wearing a burqa, which covers a persons entire face, or the niqab, which only shows the eyes, in public will lead to a fine of 1,000 kroner ($156, 134 euros).
The ban also targets other accessories that hide the face such as balaclavas and false beards. Repeated violations will be fined up to 10,000 kroner.
A 30-year-old Muslim woman interviewed in daily Berlingske, identified only as Sarah, said she had lost faith in the system.
Born and raised in Denmark by parents who emigrated from Turkey, she has worn the niqab since she was 18.
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