79 now believed to have died in London high-rise fire

Members of the Fire Brigade who attended the scene of Grenfell Fire

Members of the Fire Brigade who attended the scene of Grenfell Fire

"We must also prepare people for the awful reality that some people may not be identified due to the intensity of the fire", Commander Cundy added, stating that number of people missing and presumed dead will continue to rise.

Police said the death toll could change.

Meanwhile, Police Commander Stuart Cundy said it will take weeks or longer to recover and identify all the dead in the building.

Commander Stuart Cundy of the Metropolitan Police said that 16 bodies had been recovered from the 24-storey building in west London, but stressed that although investigators had reached the top of the tower the hard search could take weeks or longer because of the level of damage to the structure.

The search and recovery operation in the 24-storey Grenfell Tower continues, he said, adding that it has been incredibly distressing for families. Cundy has promised to share with relevant authorities any issues that need to be addressed immediately to protect public safety.

While he refused to speculate on the inquiry's outcome, Cundy said, "I would like to reassure everybody that we will be looking at all criminal offenses that may have been committed by any individual or organization".

British officials say they are helping the Syrian family of the first officially confirmed victim of the London tower blaze - 23-year-old Mohammad Alhajali - to "travel to the U.K.in these terribly sad circumstances".

"I would like to ask anyone who was in Grenfell Tower that night, but for whatever reason has not told us they are safe to please call our Casualty Bureau", he said.

A vigil in west London, close to the charred shell of Grenfell tower, where at least 30 people perished in a fire this week.

On the lack of sprinklers in Grenfell Tower, and other buildings, he said: "My understanding is that the best expert advice is that retrofitting sprinklers may not always be the best technical way of ensuring fire safety in a building".

The National Health Service said that 17 patients were still being treated in hospital, of whom nine remain in critical condition.

The Metropolitan Police has released footage showing the "indescribable" damage caused by the fire.

The London mayor on Sunday also addressed whether the flammable aluminum cladding speculated to have contributed to the blaze's rapid spread up the 24-story structure was illegal, telling press that fire services were "currently testing that cladding".

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