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Dutch Burqa Ban in Some Public Places Gets Parliament's Approval

Image: Dutch Burqa Ban in Some Public Places Gets Parliament's Approval

Women wearing niqab visit the Senate on No. 23, 2016, in the Hague, the Netherlands. Dutch MPs on Nov. 29 voted by a large majority to approve a ban on wearing the Islamic full-face burqa in some public places such as schools and hospitals. (STR/AFP/Getty Images)

By    |   Wednesday, 30 Nov 2016 05:45 PM

A large majority of the Dutch parliament has voted to ban burqas on public transportation and in public buildings where security and face-to-face communication are considered important.

Countries such as France and Belgium started the trend of banning the full face burkas worn by some Muslims after terrorists used the coverings to disguise or hide themselves to commit attacks. The Dutch plan is less strict than others, and would only apply to a few hundred women that studies suggest wear the coverings in the Netherlands, the Daily Mail reported.

The ban, which also includes ski masks and helmets that cover the entire face, carries a maximum fine of about 400 euros, which is about $425. Headgear required for work, sports, or festivals will not be included in the ban, according to Newsweek. Wearing the burqa on the street also will not be banned.

“The government sees no need to impose the ban on all public spaces,” the Dutch coalition government said in a statement, Newsweek reported. It did see a need, however, to “be able to interact face to face ... in places where public services are performed and safety must be guaranteed.”

The Dutch have said their proposal is "religion-neutral" and not aimed at preventing anyone from practicing a religion.

Some from the left-leaning Labor Party disagree with the ban, however. Interior Minister Ronald Plasterk said last week that people should be allowed to cover their faces in public in the Netherlands, which is a free country.

The bill must still pass in the upper house to become law.

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A large majority of the Dutch parliament has voted to ban burqas on public transportation and in public buildings where security and face-to-face communication are considered important.
dutch, burqa, ban
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2016-45-30
Wednesday, 30 Nov 2016 05:45 PM
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