Building materials in London fire under scrutiny

The Queen mets firefighters at a rest centre near the tower yesterday

British officials say they are helping the Syrian family of the first officially confirmed victim of the London tower blaze to come to Britain.

'It is really important that we are clear about the scale of the challenge facing us as our teams search Grenfell Tower to recover those people still inside and return them to their loved ones.

Speaking on the BBC's Andrew Marr Show he said: "I spoke to the DPP yesterday and there are prosecutors already in advising the police".

"I've heard stories of heroism, from Christians, from Muslims and from others, looking after their brothers and sisters, their neighbours and doing the job that we expect from this brilliant community because of the fantastic community that is here in this part of London". One: are our regulations correct, do they permit the right kind of materials and ban the wrong kind of materials?

The prime minister announced a fast-tracked public inquiry into what caused the fire to rapidly spread through the high-rise block of apartments and promised to provide increased aid to help survivors cope and find alternative housing.

The 91-year-old monarch said that Britain remains "resolute in the face of adversity" after the horrendous fire and recent extremist attacks in London and Manchester.

On Sunday, residents who met the Prime Minister in Downing Street following the Grenfell Tower fire criticised estate managers of the building as having been "invisible in the aftermath of the tragedy".

He has also demanded confirmation that the scope of the police investigation into the tragedy would not be hampered by the public inquiry announced on Friday.

Experts believe the building's new exterior cladding, which contained insulation, helped spread the flames quickly up the outside of the public housing tower early Wednesday.

Police have warned the death toll from the fire could rise further after confirming at least 58 people had died, or are missing and presumed dead.

'Family liaison officers are supporting families, and that includes those people we know to be dead; some of those who are critically ill and sadly those people who we have been told were in Grenfell Tower that night who we have been unable to trace.

Two government ministers - Treasury chief Philip Hammond and Trade Minister Greg Hands - said Sunday the cladding used on the building's exterior seems to be banned by British regulations. Hands cautioned that officials don't yet have exact details about the renovation that ended just past year.

"My understanding is the cladding in question, this flammable cladding which is banned in Europe and the USA, is also banned here", Chancellor Philip Hammond said in a BBC interview.

He said all records - including emails, minutes of meetings, correspondence with contractors, safety assessments, specifications and reports - must be kept intact.

He also sidestepped questions over whether he felt guilty about the tragedy, telling BBC Radio 4's The World At One: "I feel bad about the whole position we find ourselves in".

Mr Cundy said: "The conditions due to the fire damage verge on indescribable, which is why this will be such a lengthy operation taking weeks to complete".

The government says all those who lost their homes are to receive £5500.

Other criticisms included a failure to communicate with survivors and their families; a lack of visible staff on the ground providing advice; a failure to distribute any of the money being donated; and a failure to ensure surviving residents were allocated suitable accommodation nearby.

Friends and relatives of Zainab Dean, one of the people still missing after a fire engulfed Grenfell Tower, a 24 storey building gather, near the building, in west London.

The payment will be available be available to people who do not have bank accounts and for those needing to pay for funerals.

A £5 million ($8.79m) fund has been set up for emergency supplies, food and clothing.



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