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Venezuela Alerte de sécurité

Venezuela: Wide spread power disruptions continue March 26 /update 1

Nationwide power outages continue throughout Venezuela, including in Caracas, as of March 26; associated unrest possible in coming hours and days

27 mars 03h14 UTC
TIMEFRAME expected from 26/3/2019, 12h30 until 2/4/2019, 12h29 (America/Caracas). COUNTRY/REGION Northern Venezuela, Caracas
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Event

Power disruptions continue across Venezuela, including in the Capital District, as of 20:00 (local time) on Tuesday, March 26. According to media reports, blackouts are ongoing in Anzoátegui, Táchira, Miranda, Cojedes, Falcón, Bolívar, Zulia, Barinas, Trujillo, and Mérida. Service has partially been restored in Aragua, Vargas, Lara, Guárico, Sucre, and the Capital District, but interruptions continue to be reported. Some areas have been without power for over 30 hours after the new round of blackouts started on Monday, March 25.

President Nicolás Maduro suspended the public rail transportation system in Caracas on Tuesday due to the power outages. Schools were also closed and many businesses were shutdown throughout the capital. As of Tuesday evening, it is unclear when service will be fully restored. Associated protests cannot be ruled out. A heightened security presence is to be expected near all such demonstrations and clashes between protesters and security forces, as well as arrests, are likely.

Context

The March 25 blackout comes less than two weeks after the country experienced nationwide power outages from March 7 until service was restored to much of the country on March 14. The outages caused disruptions to transportation, water distribution systems, and telecommunications services. According to officials, the previous outage had been linked to a failure at the Guri hydroelectric dam. The government has claimed the outages were caused by an act of "sabotage" by the US; however, past outages that had been blamed on attacks were later attributed to infrastructural deficiencies.

Venezuela is experiencing an ongoing crisis spurred by President Nicolás Maduro's inauguration to a second term as president on January 10 following last year's contested election, prompting the National Assembly to declare a national emergency. At least 50 foreign governments, including the US, Canada, and Brazil, among others, have since recognized opposition leader Juan Guaidó as the interim head of state. 

Advice

Individuals in Venezuela are advised to monitor developments to the situation, adhere to instructions issued by their home governments, keep battery-operated devices fully charged whenever possible, remain vigilant for criminal behavior and avoid conspicuous displays of wealth, refrain from discussing political topics in public or on social media, and avoid all public demonstrations due to the risk of violence and arrest. In addition, individuals are advised to be cautious when driving or crossing streets if traffic signals are not functional.

 

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