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Third Grenfell Tower anniversary passes virtually unnoticed

US Rep. Ilhan Omar (D-MN) (L) talks with Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) during a rally with fellow Democrats before voting on H.R. 1, or the People Act, on the East Steps of the US Capitol on March 08, 2019 in Washington, DC. (AFP photo)
The public inquiry into the Grenfell Tower fire disaster is due to restart on July 06

The third anniversary of the Grenfell Tower fire tragedy has passed off without much fanfare as the UK continues to struggle with the coronavirus crisis.

A virtual service, remembering the 72 people who perished, was hosted by the Bishop of Kensington at which a series of video messages from victims’ families, members of the local community and performances by musicians were played.

As part of the virtual service, Prime Minister, Boris Johnson said: “We can all remember where we were three years ago today when we saw this tragedy unfolding on our screens and across the London skyline”.

“As a nation, we are still dealing with the consequences of what happened and working to make sure it never happens again”, the PM added.

Meanwhile, Labour party leader, Keir Starmer, made the following statement: “In the midst of their suffering, the Grenfell community came together to campaign for justice, safe homes and change … Because no one should ever go through the loss and pain they experienced".

"But three years on and, unbelievably, tonight people will go to bed in unsafe homes … Three years on and there has been little justice or accountability …Three years on their campaign continues”, Starmer added.

For his part, London mayor, Sadiq Khan, issued a written statement claiming he will be “relentless” in pursuing justice for the “Grenfell community”.

"While struggling with their own personal grief and recovery, they [Grenfell survivors and their families] have continued to campaign for building safety and are demanding change to keep others safe in their homes."

The upbeat note from British leaders contrasts sharply with the glacial pace of the Grenfell Tower inquiry which had hit multiple bureaucratic and political obstacles even before the onset of the coronavirus crisis.

In late May the inquiry was formally suspended until July at the earliest due to complications brought about by the coronavirus pandemic.


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