The Dutch Senate has approved a law that bans the wearing of “face-covering clothing” in public buildings, including hospitals, schools and government offices, as well as on public transportation.
Although the ban does not extend to public streets, the law authorizes police to ask individuals to remove face-covering clothing to establish their identity.
Those found flouting the ban — which includes Islamic veils and robes such as burqas (which cover the entire face) and niqabs (which cover the entire face except for the eyes), as well as balaclavas and full-face helmets — will be subject to a fine of 410 euros ($475).
The new law, previously adopted by the Dutch House of Representatives in November 2016, was approved on June 26 by 44 to 31 votes in the 75-seat Senate.
In a statement, the government, which has not yet said when the law will enter into effect, explained its purpose: