Lights out for Syria as electricity mysteriously cut nationwide

Blackout (illustration)

Blackout (illustration) Abed Rahim Khatib /Flash90

In the midst of a partial ceasefire, Syria’s electric grid suddenly shut down, cutting off power nationwide. Internet services also cut

(SOURCE)   Lights are out across war-torn Syria on Thursday, after the country’s power grid suddenly went offline, resulting in a nationwide power cut. Syrian state television reported that the cause of the shutdown was not immediately known.

“Electricity has been cut across all provinces and teams are trying to determine the reason for this unexpected cut,” the station reported, citing a source within the Electricity Ministry.

Damascus residents said power in the capital had been out since 1 p.m. and that mobile Internet connections from some private providers were also not working.

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

The nationwide blackout comes in the midst of a ceasefire, in effect since Saturday, which was negotiated by Russia and the United States.

Despite the ceasefire, the Syrian government reportedly used chemical weapons on a number of occasions in the past few days.

Since Syria’s conflict erupted in March 2011, various areas across the country have experienced intermittent power outages as a result of clashes or air strikes and many regularly rely on generators for power.

AFP contributed to this report