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Syria plunges into dark as nationwide blackout strikes

3 March 2016 15:55



Syria has plunged into dark as the country’s electricity network is down for unknown reasons, state media reports say.

“The electricity network has been cut in all governorates,” official news agency SANA said on Thursday, quoting a source in the Ministry for Electricity.

The television report added that “attempts to find out the cause of the outage” had started.

According to residents in the capital, Damascus, they have been without power since 1:00 p.m. local time (1100 GMT).

According to Syria’s state mobile provider, its Internet service had been “partially cut due to part of the network unexpectedly malfunctioning.”

Later reports by SANA quoted the Syrian electricity minister as saying that the electricity supply was gradually returning in different parts of the country, while power is expected to be restored by midnight.

Syria has been hit by a number of partial power cuts since the foreign-backed militancy began in the country in 2011, with some of the blackouts being blamed on Takfiri terrorists targeting electricity networks around.

The complete power blackout on Thursday is seen as a rare occurrence.

This comes six days after a ceasefire agreement brokered by Russia and the United States took effect.

The Syrian government has said it accepts the terms of the deal on condition that military efforts against Daesh and the al-Qaeda-linked al-Nusra Front continue.

However, on Wednesday, Russian Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Maria Zakharova said the deal had been violated more than 30 times in the past few days.

Syrian President Bashar al-Assad has also said that terrorists have violated the ceasefire since the first day the agreement was reached.

According to a February report by the Syrian Center for Policy Research, the conflict in Syria has so far claimed the lives of over 470,000 people, injured 1.9 million others, and displaced nearly half of the country’s pre-war population of about 23 million within or beyond its borders.

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