London Fire: Syrian Refugee Named as First Victim of Deadly Blaze

Jerome Frank
June 18, 2017

"Mohammad came to this country for safety and the United Kingdom failed to protect him".

"They said when the fire was in the next room, the smoke was coming inside".

An outpouring of heart-wrenching messages from London's Syrian community mourned the death of Mohammad Al-Hajali, 23, a civil engineering student at the University of West London.

"He survived Assad, the war in Syria, only to die in a tower block in London".

He is said to have been trapped on the floor for two hours while hundreds of firefighters sought to rescue residents but failed to reach above the 13th floor. He made phonecalls to friends and family at home in Syria, saying "The fire is here now, goodbye". "Mohammed came to this country for safety and the United Kingdom failed to protect him", the Syria Solidarity Campaign group said in a statement.

A Home Office spokeswoman said: "We have established processes in place which allow us to consider visa applications outside the Immigration Rules on compassionate grounds".

"We've been to all the hospitals and we've been searching all day but we still haven't found them". It looks like it's been bombed, ironically like the burnt out shells of buildings in many war-ravaged and abandoned buildings in Syria where Mohammed Alhajali came from.

Mr Alhajali was among 17 people confirmed to have been killed in the blaze.

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Omar "lost Mohammad on the way out", the Syria Solidarity Campaign said in a statement.

Omar then broke down in tears before adding: "I saw the fire and the flat from outside".

Distraught mother Genet Shawo has refused to "fear the worst" after confirming her five-year-old son Isaac had not been seen since her family fled the 18th floor.

The couple, both 27, spent their final moments telling their far-away parents they loved them with Gloria telling her mum: "Thank you for what you have done for me".

When he got outside Omar phoned his brother, still unaware he had not made it out. I was watching the flat - it was burning - and my brother was inside.

"I went outside, I called him [Omar], I said "Where are you"? There are no words", family friend Abdulaziz Almashi said.

As of this afternoon, the petition has been signed by more than 54,00 people and steadily reaching its target of 75,000. He is physically disabled (he uses a mobility scooter), lives on the seventh floor and says he doesn't feel entirely safe at home having witnessed the fire on Tuesday morning. He said: "'No one brought me outside".

Other reports by Guamnewswatch

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