Cladding used in Grenfell Tower banned in United Kingdom, says govt

A firefighter stands outside of the Grenfell Tower after fire engulfed the 24-storey building, in London.

"What I'm hearing from the leading fire safety experts is that it isn't necessarily necessary to retrofit sprinklers to make a building fire safe", he said to the incredulous BBC1 host.

Commander Cundy furthermore highlighted: "Our investigation will be wide ranging and exhaustive - it will seek to find out if any crimes have been committed and if so make sure that we do all we can to bring any person responsible to justice".

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.

Adding: "When we were looking at this when I was DPP in relation to other fires, we were looking at manslaughter charges".

'Let's get the technical advice properly evaluated by a public inquiry and then let's decide how to go forward'.

"So there are two separate questions".

Hammond said the public inquiry set up by the Government following the tragedy would also examine if rules had been broken. "Those who mock health and safety, regulations and red tape need to take a hard look at the consequences of cutting these and ask themselves whether Grenfell Tower is a price worth paying".

He complained bitterly that a friend - the young artist Khadija Saye - was still alive three hours after the fire started but was unable to get out of her apartment to safety.

A criminal investigation has been launched after which Theresa May has said there will be a public inquiry - but victims and campaigning are calling for an inquest which is independent of the government and has more powers to investigate.

The British government yesterday scrambled to contain the political fallout from the Grenfell Tower inferno that has claimed at least 58 lives as officials focused on building materials that may have caused the fire to spread quickly.

The 1974-built concrete tower had recently been fitted with new exterior insulation cladding, which many locals blame for spreading the inferno so quickly.

Police have been struggling to come up with an authoritative list of who was in the building when the fire started, making it hard to determine how many had died. Attention has focused on materials used during the renovation process completed a year ago.

Greg Hands told Sky News that "my understanding is that the cladding that was reported was not in accordance with United Kingdom building regulations".

Appearing on the BBC's Andrew Marr Show, Mr Hammond said: "My understanding is the cladding in question, this flammable cladding which is banned in Europe and the U.S., is also banned here".

Labour Party lawmaker David Lammy said the Government and the police should immediately seize all documents relating to the building's renovation to prevent the destruction of evidence that could show criminal wrongdoing.

"The prime minister needs to act immediately to ensure that all evidence is protected so that everyone culpable for what happened at Grenfell Tower is held to account and feels the full force of the law", said Mr Lammy. "When the truth comes out about this tragedy, we may find that there is blood on the hands of a number of organizations".

Homeless Grenfell Tower victims will receive at least £5500 ($9670) in a Government payout, the Sun reports. However, the identification of the other victims is proving very hard - which experts attribute to the extreme heat of the fire.

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