Cabinet Minister Says Venezuela’s Blackout May Be Caused by US Cyberattack

Cabinet Minister Says Venezuela's Blackout May Be Caused by US Cyberattack

Earlier, Venezuelan Minister of Communication and Information Jorge Rodriguez pledged that the nation’s electric power supply would be restored nationwide in the coming hours, adding that the supply has already been restored in the eastern part of the Latin American country.

Venezuelan Minister of Communication and Information Jorge Rodriguez said on Saturday that the country’s near-total blackout has been caused by a cyberattack against the Guri hydroelectric power plant, which provides over 70 percent of the nation’s electricity. Rodrigues claimed the outage could have been staged by the US.

“They [the US] carried out a cyberattack on [Guri’s] automatic control system. Everything shows that it is a multiformat and violent attack against all of Venezuela,”Rodriguez told the country’s state television network.

He said that a delegation headed by UN High Commissioner for Human Rights Michelle Bachelet will visit Venezuela in the next few days and that Caracas “will show her the proof about these criminals”.

“We will submit a complaint to her in order for the world to respect human rights in Venezuela”, Rodriguez underscored, vowing that the electric power supply will be restored in the coming hours throughout the country.

His statement comes after Venezuelan Foreign Minister Jorge Arreaza lashed out on Friday at politicians close to US President Donald Trump for “celebrating” and “enjoying the reckless distortion [of facts]” in the wake of electricity supply issues facing Venezuela.Arreaza referred to tweets by US State Secretary Mike Pompeo, who denied claims that Washington had a role in Venezuela’s electricity system collapse, and claimed instead that the blackout was “the result of the Maduro regime’s incompetence”.

On Thursday, the Venezuelan national electricity supplier reported that Guri had faced deliberate sabotage, with a power outage subsequently registered in 21 out of Venezuela’s 23 states. President Nicolas Maduro accused the US of waging an “electricity war” against Venezuela.

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