Several women in Denmark have pledged to wear burqas and niqabs in protest as a ban on clothes that cover the face came into effect on Wednesday. The protests will be held in Copenhagen and Aarhus cities. Amnesty International issued a statement describing the legislation as a “discriminatory violation of women’s rights”.

“I won’t take my niqab off,” 21-year-old Sabina told Reuters. “If I must take it off I want to do it because it is a reflection of my own choice.” She has joined hands with a group “Kvinder I Dialog” (Women In Dialogue) to protest the ban.

The country had approved the ban on May 31, following the footsteps of several European countries. The law was presented by Denmark’s centre-right governing coalition, which said the it was not aimed at any religion and does not ban headscarves, turbans or the Jewish skull cap.

Those who violate the new law risk being fined over £100 [approximately Rs 8,972.] and up to £1,200 [approximately Rs 1,07,664] for repeat offences. Police said protestors at the site of the demonstration venue will not be fined, The Independent reported. Danish National Police representative Benny Ochkenholt told public broadcaster DR that protestors wearing the banned clothing would be fined if they wore the veils on their route to and from the protest sites.

“Whilst some specific restrictions on the wearing of full face veils for the purposes of public safety may be legitimate, this blanket ban is neither necessary nor proportionate and violates women’s rights to freedom of expression and religion,” Amnesty International’s Deputy Europe Director Fotis Filippou said. “If the intention of this law was to protect women’s rights it fails abjectly. Instead, the law makes a mockery of the freedoms Denmark purports to uphold.”