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Venezuelan journalist arrested on suspicion of sabotaging nation’s power grid

March 12, 17:26 UTC+3 CARACAS

On March 7, Caracas and most Venezuelan states experienced a major power outage

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CARACAS, March 12. /TASS/. Union Radio journalist Luis Carlos Diaz was detained by Venezuelan authorities having been suspected of attempting to sabotage the functioning of the Simon Bolivar Hydroelectric Plant, also known as Guri Dam, Venezuela's National Press Workers Union said on Tuesday.

"The Bolivarian National Intelligence Service confirms the arrest of Luis Carlos Diaz," the Union announced via Twitter. According to the post, law enforcement agents raided the journalist’s house and seized computers and mobile phones.

"Luis Carlos Diaz can be one of the two detainees suspected of attempting to sabotage Venezuela’s power grids," the Union wrote. The journalist’s family have confirmed this information.

On Monday evening, Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro announced the detention of two individuals who had attempted to disrupt the Simon Bolivar Hydroelectric Plant’s communication system. President Maduro emphasized that the power plant had come under a three-pronged attack: a cyber-episode, an electromagnetic pulse and a physical attack.

On March 7, Caracas and most Venezuelan states experienced a major power outage. Local media suggests that in total 20 out of 23 states were affected. Therefore, the whole country was practically left without electricity. Caracas residents say this has been the longest blackout they could remember.

Venezuela's state power company, Corpoelec, said that the power outage was caused by an attempt to sabotage the Simon Bolivar Hydroelectric Power Plant. President Maduro blamed "American imperialism", while the US State Department denied any involvement.

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