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Police: death toll rises to 12 in London blaze

The death toll in the blaze that engulfed a residential tower in west London early on Wednesday has risen to 12 and “will rise further,” Metropolitan Police Commander Stuart Cundy said.

Emergency services are continuing a “long and complex operation’’ in the building, and the “incredibly challenging’’ task of confirming how many people are missing.

“It is very, very challenging to put a number on those unaccounted for,’’ Cundy told reporters.

More than 200 firefighters battled the inferno, which officials called an “unprecedented incident.”

Smoke billows from a tower block severely damaged by a serious fire in north Kensington, West London.

Witnesses reported seeing residents throwing babies and small children from high windows to people on the sidewalk in a desperate effort to save them from the flames.


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