Power outage plunges most of Venezuela into darkness

A man stands on the balcony of his apartment as he waits for the power to return after a blackout in CaracasBy Diego Ore and Andrew Cawthorne CARACAS (Reuters) – Venezuela's second massive power outage of the year plunged much of the nation into darkness on Monday night, prompting renewed talk of sabotage from President Nicolas Maduro's government and cries of incompetence from its foes. Power went off in Caracas and other cities around the country soon after 8 p.m. local time (0030 GMT), to the intense annoyance of residents and commuters. Maduro, a 50-year-old former bus driver who narrowly won a presidential election this year after the death of his mentor and former leader Hugo Chavez, accused the opposition then of deliberately sabotaging the power grid to discredit him. His powerful ally and National Assembly president, Diosdado Cabello, repeated the same accusation after Monday's blackout that affected more than half of Venezuela.

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