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Saturday 7th
posted by Steve Sweeney in Britain

Campaigners deliver 14,000-strong petition for Bashir Naderi

HOME Secretary Amber Rudd must stop the “callous and irresponsible” deportation of a young man from Wales to Afghanistan, said campaigners as they handed in a 14,000-strong petition yesterday.

Bashir Naderi, who turned 20 on New Year’s Day, arrived in Britain nine years ago after his mother sold the family’s land to pay traffickers to help him flee Afghanistan after his father was murdered by the Taliban outside their home.

He has lived with foster parents in Cardiff since the age of 10 and, despite speaking no Afghan languages, the Home Office ordered his forced removal from Britain last November.

He was arrested in October after reporting for a monthly sign-in at the Home Office and taken to a detention centre in Oxfordshire to await deportation. His flight was put on hold just hours before he was due to board a plane to Kabul but Immigration Minister Robert Goodwill is still considering a fresh case for deportation.

He still has to report to the Home Office every week while his case is being reviewed.

Mr Naderi has no contact with his family in Afghanistan — including his mother — and it is unclear whether any of them are still alive.

Campaigners — including shadow Welsh secretary Jo Stevens and Welsh singers Charlotte Church and Cerys Matthews — have said: “To send Bashir back to Afghanistan would be dangerous, callous and irresponsible,” calling him a “Welsh boy — one of our own.”

Ms Stevens said: “I am at a loss as to why the Home Office system means that he is now being targeted for removal just at the point where he can begin to use his education and skills to start work, and contribute to society.”

Mr Naderi’s girlfriend Nicole Cooper said: “We didn’t even know before this happened how people are treated, it has been horrifying to realise in such a horrific way that people go through this.”

The Home Office told Cardiff Central MP Ms Stevens that they do not keep records of those who arrive in the country as an unaccompanied minor.

Ms Stevens said that it was of great concern that those whose home is in Britain “should be removed to a dangerous country when they turn 18, despite having been educated here and wanting to contribute.”

A Home Office spokesperson told the Star: “We do not routinely comment on individual cases.”

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