A power outage left 70 percent of Venezuela without electricity Wednesday, and President Nicolas Maduro blamed the country’s political opposition for the “sabotage” of power lines.
“Everything seems to indicate that the extreme right has resumed its plan for an electrical strike against the country,” Maduro wrote on Twitter. Opposition leader Henrique Capriles responded by saying the government was trying to distract the public from the country’s problems by fabricating a conspiracy theory, BBC reports.
The massive blackout lasted about three hours and also affected parts of the capital, Caracas. It disrupted the subway and disabled traffic lights in the city, causing chaos. While power was slowly being restored in different areas, thousands of workers were sent home. Government officials have previously said that high energy consumption and poor maintenance of transmission lines led to a high incidence of power outages in the country. But such blackouts rarely affect Caracas.