Cardiff bay
The controversial posters appeared in the Cardiff suburb GrangetownFlickr

Large numbers of posters urging Muslims not to vote in May's general election have been removed by council workers in Cardiff.

The posters appeared overnight on lamp posts and bus stops. The posters carrying a large exclamation mark and the hashtag #DontVote4ManMadeLaw declared, "Democracy is a system whereby man violates the right of Allah."

The posters were on display in the Cardiff suburb of Grangetown.

Don't vote poster Cardiff
The Don't Vote poster seen in Cardiff Source: Twitter

The area was the home of three teenagers who went to Syria to fight with Islamic State, as well as members of the Islamic Dawah Association – a radical Islamic group that succeeded the Supporters of Tahweed, which is banned by the UK government.

General election canvassers and campaigners have also been confronted in the streets by groups of young Muslims in an "intimidating" fashion, according to an unnamed local councillor.

The twitter hashtag #DontVote4ManMadeLaw has been posted on the Twitter account @TawheedHakimiya – which translates as "Allah is the only law-maker".

'No vote' campaign

The Twitter feed also links to a YouTube video by the filmmaker group DawahWorks, which states that Islam and democracy are incompatible.

The instruction to abstain from voting has been condemned by mainstream Muslim leaders in Wales.

"The hateful people behind these posters do not represent us," said Sahar al-Faifi of the Muslim Council of Wales.

Cardiff Council said on Friday that it would take down any religiously motivated or offensive posters.

"People have a right to vote and that needs to be respected," said Ashley Govier, a Grangetown councillor. "Grangetown is a tolerant area but it's got to go both ways. If they do choose not to exercise their right to vote, that's their business. But we're trying to encourage people to do so, and this is unhelpful and not very nice."

Govier applauded the council's response in removing the posters, saying that it had been swift and "pretty incredible".