Frustrations and protests grow as friends and families try to find Grenfell Tower missing

Frustrations and protests grow as friends and families try to find Grenfell Tower missing

A number of friends and family members of those missing following the Grenfell Tower fire told of chaos and frustration as they tried to find information about their loved ones.

Hundreds of people have protested outside Downing Street for the removal of British Prime Minister Theresa May after criticism over her response to the Grenfell Tower inferno.

It comes after police revealed that 58 people are missing and presumed dead.

Members of the public said there appeared to be no centralised list of those missing, and that they were forced to continually visit or call the various rescue centres and hospitals that were dealing with those affected.

Frustrations and protests grow as friends and families try to find Grenfell Tower missing

Victims of the fire have made clear their demands to Mrs May in the two-and-a-half hour meeting in Number 10 this afternoon.

They left Number 10 after their meeting with the Prime Minister as demonstrators shouted: 'May out!' just metres away.

A man representing the group, who did not give his name, told reporters they would make a full statement "in the community".

He said the group had spoken about their "demands and what we expect".

Frustrations and protests grow as friends and families try to find Grenfell Tower missing

Back in the area around Grenfell Tower, Mirna Suleiman, 26, a family friend of the first named victim, Mohammad Alhajali, claimed she and members of his family were told by the designated casualty line that there was no such list of missing people - even a day and a half after the fire had taken place.

"I spoke to the casualty helpline and they didn't have any information... they didn't offer any help. I was expecting to hear lists of missing people, lists of people who had died, passed away. (But there was) nothing, they weren't collating these numbers."

She also claimed that the rescue centres maintained no formal records of those that had attended, and even said one hospital told her they were unable to say whether Mr Alhajali was there for confidentiality reasons.

It comes after Mrs May avoided speaking to the protestors who gathered outside Kensington Town Hall on Friday night to demand answers about the tragic fire.

In a statement today, The Prime Minister said there had been "huge frustrations" on the ground as people struggled to find information.

She added: "The response of the emergency services, NHS and the community has been heroic.

"But, frankly, the support on the ground for families who needed help or basic information in the initial hours after this appalling disaster was not good enough."

Mrs May had earlier sidestepped questions over her response to the disaster, after facing criticism of her reaction to the tragedy.

The British Prime Minister met a group of victims, residents, volunteers and community leaders at a church close to the scene of the horrific blaze, and earlier visited survivors in hospital.

Frustrations and protests grow as friends and families try to find Grenfell Tower missing

But the visits, which took place more than 48 hours after the devastating fire broke out, have done little to quell the growing anger over the way Mrs May has dealt with the tragedy.

As she left St Clement's Church following a visit lasting less than an hour, the PM faced cries of "coward" and "shame on you".

One woman wept saying it was because Mrs May had declined to speak to anyone outside the meeting.

In a television interview, Mrs May said the fire was "absolutely horrifying" and had been a "terrifying experience" for those affected.

Frustrations and protests grow as friends and families try to find Grenfell Tower missing

But she sidestepped questions over whether she had failed to judge the public mood.

Told there was a need for the public to hear her say something had gone badly wrong and the Government accepted responsibility, Mrs May said: "Something terrible has happened.

"This is an absolutely awful fire that took place. People have lost their lives, people have had their homes destroyed, they have fled for their lives with absolutely nothing."

Asked if she had misread the public anger, she replied: "What I have done since this incident took place is, first of all, yesterday ensure that the public services had the support they need in order to be able to do the job they were doing in the immediate aftermath."

Frustrations and protests grow as friends and families try to find Grenfell Tower missing

Pressed again on whether she had failed to understand the anger felt by the public, she said: "This was a terrible tragedy that took place. People have lost their lives and others have lost everything, all their possessions, their home and everything.

"What we are doing is putting in place the support that will help them.

"But it is a terrible tragedy. I have heard horrifying stories from the fire brigade, from police and from victims themselves who were in that tower but also from other local residents, some of whom of course have not been able to go back to their homes either.

"What I'm now absolutely focused on is ensuring that we get that support on the ground.

"Government is making money available, we are ensuring we are going to get to the bottom of what happened, we will ensure that people are rehoused, but we need to make sure that that actually happens."

Frustrations and protests grow as friends and families try to find Grenfell Tower missing

Mrs May said the public inquiry into the fire will take place "as soon as possible" and insisted the Government had acted on previous warnings about tower block safety by a coroner.

"The Government has taken action on the recommendations of the coroner's report," she insisted.

Asked how residents in other high rise blocks would be able to sleep at night, Mrs May said: "The Government is doing everything in its power to ensure that people are safe.

"We have identified those buildings and now and over the weekend people are going in and inspecting those buildings."

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