Published: Mon, June 19, 2017
Global News | By Stacy Ballard

UK government scrambles to limit fallout from London fire


The inquiry will report back to the prime minister.

Photos and videos published by the Metropolitan Police show the gutted wreckage of apartments within the 24-storey tower block after Wednesday's fire.

Sixteen bodies have been taken to a mortuary, and the first victim formally identified was named as Mohammad Alhajali, a 23-year-old Syrian refugee.

"Put to the test, the United Kingdom has been resolute in the face of adversity", Elizabeth said.

"That's why I'm positive about it, because I think in the past local residents here have not always been listened to".

The chancellor said a criminal investigation would examine whether building regulations had been breached when the block was overhauled.

London's mayor Sadiq Khan said on Sunday that the Grenfell Tower fire, in which 58 people are presumed dead, was caused by "mistakes and neglect", as he acknowledged growing public frustration and anger.

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The death toll in London's Grenfell Tower blaze is now assumed to be 58, United Kingdom police say.

On Saturday May met a group of 15 victims, residents, volunteers and community leaders at her Downing Street office. Demonstrators gathered outside, protesting about several issues including the fire.

"Somebody began to sob beside her and she just held her hand for the next 20 minutes, which wasn't quite the caricature most of us have of the Prime Minister", he added.

British Prime Minister Theresa May, criticized shortly after the blaze for failing to meet with victims, says the public inquiry looking into the tragedy will report directly to her.

May said those living in similar high-rises "also want answers" and ordered local authorities to complete urgent safety checks. Both May and her ministers have said they will do all they can to help those left homeless after the blaze and make sure other high-rise buildings, usually home to poorer people, are checked and safe.

It comes from the £5 million government emergency fund previously announced, and support workers will help those who need it access it.

Mr Khan also said an inquiry should be properly resourced so it can get the full truth about the fire as quickly as possible. Everyone displaced will be housed nearby within three weeks, she promised.

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Ms Berejiklian said she also believes it is appropriate to have a discussion about national laws relating to regulations.

Many survivors are sleeping on the floor in community centers and there's still no coordinated distribution of donated food and clothing.

"It is hard to escape a very sombre national mood", Elizabeth said in a message on her official birthday.

Building officials have not commented since the fire.

Residents of the destroyed tower said May was far too slow to visit the stricken community, that the building had been unsafe and that officials have failed to give enough information and support to those who have lost relatives and their homes. He came to Britain in 2014 with his brother.

"He came to the United Kingdom because he had ambitions and aims for his life and for his family".

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