Dutch burka ban
The Dutch cabinet has approved a ban prohibiting the wearing of a burka in public places Getty

Female Muslims in the Netherlands could soon be fined the equivalent of up to almost £300 ($464) after the Dutch cabinet approved a partial ban of face-covering burqas and niqabs in public areas.

The ban would apply to wearing the veils in "education and health care institutions, government buildings and on public transport" and women flouting the ban could be fined up to €405.

Dutch Prime Minister Mark Rutte and his government stopped short of banning the veils in all public areas and claimed the bill "does not have any religious background".

He said the law, which will now be assessed by a legal panel, would apply "in specific situations where it is essential for people to be seen".

The government said it had "tried to find a balance between people's freedom to wear the clothes they want and the importance of mutual and recognisable communication", reported AFP.

The decision means a previous bill from the prime minister's government, which proposed banning face-covering veils on the street, will be withdrawn.

The move from the Dutch cabinet members comes 10 months after the European Court of Human Rights upheld France's burqa ban.

In July 2014, European judges ruled the French government was encouraging citizens to "live together" by introducing the ban in 2010.