The Archbishop of Canterbury said Great Britain should allow Islamic "Sharia" law.
Archbishop Rowan Williams said he does not advocate the extreme aspects of Sharia, such as cutting off hands.
But his unusual proposal would allow British Muslims to resolve marital and financial disputes under Sharia instead of the British court system.
He said it would give Muslims a sense that the British respect Islam.
"To recognize Sharia is to recognize a method of jurisprudence governed by revealed texts rather than a single system," he said.
Muslims praised the proposal but the government rejected it.