Maduro says 2 perpetrators of power grid 'sabotage' captured

Maduro says 2 perpetrators of power grid 'sabotage' captured
Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro has said two would-be saboteurs have been caught “in flagrante delicto” trying to take down the communications system of the Guri hydroelectric dam. Investigation into who sent them is underway.

Authorities reportedly apprehended the two "material" perpetrators of the vandalism in the midst of interfering with the dam’s communications systems on Monday, averting a serious catastrophe, and have turned them over to the courts. They are now looking for the "intellectual authors" of the sabotage, and Maduro has blamed the US for the sustained technological attack on Venezuela's electrical system, which began last week.

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After a failure at the Guri dam left much of the country in the dark on Thursday night, authorities worked round the clock to fix the problem, managing to restore nearly 70 percent of the electrical system before a cyberattack knocked it out again on Saturday afternoon, Maduro said, adding that one of the generators had been working perfectly and could only have been sabotaged by an infiltrator. The Guri hydroelectric plant produces 80 percent of Venezuela’s power.

While stressing that the “Venezuelan state has to act” to hold those to blame for the “electrical criminal coup” responsible, Maduro praised the “effort and behavior” of Venezuelans who have remained at peace despite the prolonged blackout. He denounced the sabotage as a “serious violation of human rights.”

While some of the country’s power has been restored, Maduro has suspended school and business activities for Tuesday as much of the nation remains in darkness.

Secretary of State Mike Pompeo, who has been relentlessly pushing for Maduro’s ouster for months, along with the rest of the Trump administration, claimed the outages are due to “years and years of neglect,” due to the “mismanagement and greed” of Maduro’s government. He denied US responsibility for the blackout while proclaiming that the US is “interested only in the welfare of the Venezuelan people.”

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