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17 Sep, 2021 22:14

Syria suffers widespread blackout after ‘attack’ on gas pipeline feeding key power station – electricity minister

Syria suffers widespread blackout after ‘attack’ on gas pipeline feeding key power station – electricity minister

The Syrian capital was thrown into darkness after an “attack” on a gas line feeding a major power plant, the country’s electricity minister told state media, noting repairs are underway and that the issues would soon be resolved.

“There was a significant direct drop in gas pressure, which led to the failure at the Deir Ali power station... as a result of an attack on the gas line,” Minister of Electricity Ghassan al-Zamil told the Syria TV channel late on Friday, though he added that few details were yet known about the purported attack.

The outages affected Damascus and the surrounding region, as well as some other areas around Syria, according to SANA, however the full extent of the blackout remains unclear, with some reports suggesting the outages were nationwide. Al-Zamil said power should be restored in the capital soon, as several other power stations will attempt to compensate for the shutdown at Deir Ali.

Unconfirmed photos purporting to show “sabotage” to the gas line have circulated online.  

Damascus has reported a number of sabotage attempts and terrorist attacks against its critical infrastructure over the years, including a similar incident at a gas pipeline in the outskirts of the capital city in August 2020, which also triggered major outages across Syria. The gas pipeline in question had been attacked on five different occasions prior, officials said, though they declined to name any perpetrators. Washington, however, later pinned the attack on Islamic State (IS, formerly ISIS), but shared no evidence to support the charge.

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