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Cladding used in London's Grenfell Tower is 'banned in Britain'

19 June 2017

More than 250 firefighters were called to tackle the blaze, which London Fire commissioner Dany Cotton described as "truly disgusting and shocking" for the level of devastation it caused.

The tower underwent refurbishment by construction firm, Rydon, in 2016, and it has since emerged that a cheaper, more flammable version of the exterior cladding was used in the work. "My understanding is that the cladding in question, this flammable cladding which is banned in Europe and the United States, is also banned here".

He said the government is carrying out an "urgent inspection" of other tower blocks in Britain to assess safety.

The blaze, which consumed the entire 24-storey block of flats, is being looked into by investigators to determine what exactly caused it, and whether or not criminal misconduct contributed to the severity of it.

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Cundy took time to address concerns that authorities have underplayed the scale of the tragedy. Counselors are already working with 52 families.

There has been a public outcry at the government's initial failure to provide up-to-the minute information.

Earlier on Saturday Prime Minister Theresa May met victims of the blaze at Downing Street, amid criticism she had not seen them in the immediate wake of the tragedy.

Speaking on ITV's Peston on Sunday, she said: "Kensington and Chelsea are giving £10 to the survivors when they go to hotels". Anger among residents has been mounting in recent days as information about the missing has been scanty and efforts to find temporary housing have faltered.

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Prince William hugged a victim of Wednesday's deadly west London fire (which now has a death toll of 58 people) when he made a visit to a crisis center on Friday. And the government did announce a 5 million-pound (about $6.4 million) fund for Grenfell victims on Friday and said it aims to rehouse people within three weeks.

The first victim has been formally identified as 23-year-old Syrian refugee Mohammed Alhajali.

"All I can say is to my certain knowledge the council, councillors, volunteers, community groups, officers of the council, have been present in North Kensington since very soon after they were notified that the fire had started".

Fifty-eight people who have been reported missing after Grenfell Tower caught fire are presumed to be dead, London police confirmed today. This relies on dental records, fingerprints and DNA when possible and also features like tattoos or scars.

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They feel they have been ignored because they are poor, he said. Sixteen bodies have been taken to the mortuary including one person who died in hospital - the others have been recovered from the building.