POLITICIANS have backed a Vale man in his fight against deportation back to Afghanistan.

Cricketer Mirwais Ahmadzai came to Alexandria at the age of 16, fleeing persecution and political instability in his native country, before moving to Dumbarton.

Now, the Home Office are attempting to send the 29-year-old back to the war torn country, where international military forces are still stationed.

The deportation is slated for the end of October.

Last week, the Reporter detailed how Mirwais’ teammates from the Vale of Leven Cricket Club have stepped up, writing a letter to local politicians, along with the First Minister.

Now, both Dumbarton’s MSP and MP have come out in support of the effort to keep Mirwais in the country.

Jackie Baillie, MSP for Dumbarton, said: “I have been contacted by the Vale of Leven Cricket Club who are concerned about the planned deportation of Mirwais Ahmadzai.

Read more: Vale of Leven Cricket Club fights to save player from deportation

“The political situation in Afghanistan is fluid to say the least and Mirwais, who came to Scotland when he was 16, could be in danger if he returned.

“It is clear that he is very much part of the community and plays for the Vale of Leven Cricket Club and they are supporting him in his wish to remain in the country.

“I will write to the UK Home Secretary and the Scottish Government’s Cabinet Secretary for External Affairs about his case.”

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Martin Docherty-Hughes, MP for West Dunbartonshire said: “I’ve been in touch with the president of Vale of Leven Cricket Club about Mirwais’ plight. This case appears to be yet another example of the UK government’s hostile environment policy harming people who call Scotland home.

“My understanding is that Mirwais is a popular and valued member of the cricket club, having joined when he came to Scotland as child 13 years ago fleeing war and persecution.

“It’s appalling that the Home Office is now attempting to forcibly remove him, and I commend Vale of Leven Cricket Club for speaking out. I will certainly do all I can to help ensure Mirwais is not unfairly treated by the Home Office.”

A spokesman for the Scottish Government said: “We are sympathetic to those who are facing difficulties navigating the highly complex and increasingly restrictive UK Government Immigration and asylum system.”

A Home Office spokeswoman said: “All applications are considered on their individual merits.”