US Secretary of State Michael Pompeo tweeted on Friday that the current power outage in Venezuela is “the result of the Maduro regime’s incompetence”.
“The power outage […] is not because of the USA. It’s not because of Colombia. It’s not Ecuador or Brazil, Europe or anywhere else”, Pompeo claimed, adding in another tweet that “Maduro’s policies bring nothing but darkness”.
The power outage and the devastation hurting ordinary Venezuelans is not because of the USA. It’s not because of Colombia. It’s not Ecuador or Brazil, Europe or anywhere else. Power shortages and starvation are the result of the Maduro regime’s incompetence.— Secretary Pompeo (@SecPompeo) 8 марта 2019 г.
In a separate tweet, Pompeo hinted at the ouster of Maduro, not least because there is “no power and no medicine” in Venezuela.
No food. No medicine. Now, no power. Next, no Maduro.— Secretary Pompeo (@SecPompeo) 8 марта 2019 г.
Pompeo’s remarks came after Venezuela's Electric Power Minister Luis Motta Dominguez said that the authorities were working to resolve the blackout issue, which was reported earlier on Friday.
“We are getting ready to restore the power supply as soon as possible… It could take three hours,” Dominguez told the broadcaster Telesur.
Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro, for his part, accused the US of unleashing an electric energy war against the Latin American country, which Maduro said will not succeed.
"The electric energy war declared and directed by the US imperialists against our people will be destroyed. Nothing and nobody will win over the people of [Venezuela's late leader Hugo] Chavez," Maduro tweeted on Thursday.
#Update: Video of the highway through the city of #Caracas in #Venezuela, Skyline is complete dark not one single light in the buildings as complete power outage proceeds in the country. pic.twitter.com/ArsitmxAlJ— Sotiri Dimpinoudis (@sotiridi) 7 марта 2019 г.
Earlier, a power outage was reportedly registered in 21 out of 23 states of Venezuela, with the country’s capital Caracas also facing a blackout.
#Update: Picture's of the situation right now in #Caracas in #Venezuela. One house with a candle (Left) and the Caracas skyline (Right) as power outage fall in the country for more then 2 hours in. pic.twitter.com/lIllfea2J3— Sotiri Dimpinoudis (@sotiridi) 7 марта 2019 г.
“We will not allow this! We are working to restore power supply," the corporation wrote on its Twitter account.
Venezuela's Guri hydroelectric power plant has an installed capacity of 10,200 MW and is the third largest power plant in the world, according to the site Power Technology. The plant provides for over 70 percent of the country's electric needs but is occasionally affected by droughts.