London (CNN)More than half of British Muslims (52%) think homosexuality should not be legal, and nearly half (47%) think it is not appropriate for gay people to teach in schools, according to a new survey of British Muslims.
The results have sparked debate about the integration of the Britain’s largest religious minority.
The findings come from face-to-face interviews with 1,081 British Muslims by the polling agency ICM for a television program, “What British Muslims Really Think.” The program is scheduled to air Wednesday on Britain’s Channel 4.
The survey, conducted with self-identified adult Muslims last year, found Muslim attitudes to be in line with mainstream public opinions on many topics. But significant differences emerged on issues relating to gender, sexuality, anti-Semitism and political or religious violence.
For example, the general public was markedly more liberal on issues related to homosexuality, with 11% of those surveyed saying homosexuality should not be legal, and 14% saying that it was not appropriate for gays and lesbians to teach in schools.
Responding to the poll on social media, writer and broadcaster Kenan Malik tweeted that he believed Britons of most faiths had become more liberal on issues such as homosexuality and women’s rights over the past generation. But from his experience, “British Muslims, on the other hand, seem to have become more conservative.”
The survey also found British Muslims more likely than the general population to sympathize with terrorism “as a form of political protest,” although support was very low — 4% of Muslims said they sympathized, compared with 1% of the general public.
The Muslims interviewed were also more likely to support the ISIS objective of creating an Islamic state, regardless of the methods involved, with 7% expressing support, compared with 2% of the general public.
Muslims were also much more likely to say Jewish people had too much power in Britain (35% agreed, compared with 9% of the general population); that it was acceptable for Muslim men to have more than one wife (31% of Muslims agreed versus 9% of the public); and that a woman should always obey her husband (39% of Muslims agreed, compared with 5% of the public).
About 2.71 million Muslims live in England and Wales, according to the 2011 census. That makes them 4.8% of the population, the second largest religious group.
Christianity remains the largest religion in England and Wales, with 59.3% of the population identifying themselves as Christian, according to 2011 census data — the latest available.