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Rebel attack leaves Pakistan in the dark

Pakistan was plunged into darkness after a power transmission line broke down on Sunday leaving 80 per cent of the country without electricity.

The power outage, the fourth and most extensive one in the past month according to the local press, was thought to have been caused by a rebel attack and affected millions of people including major cities and the capital Islamabad.    

The blackout began after midnight when a transmission line connecting a privately run power plant to the national grid was damaged according to officials.

Minister of state for water and power Abid Sher Ali later admitted that a bomb exploded in Naseerabad district and issued an apology saying that electricity has been restored in most of the country.  

Power failures in Pakistan occur on a regular basis due to its complex and stitched-up electricity distribution system.

The country is also caught up in a two-way debt process where people fail to pay for electricity despite the government setting low prices. Financial losses and the government’s failure to make payments to major oil and gas suppliers often lead to more electricity cuts.

Pakistan’s Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif pulled out of the World Economic Forum (WEF) meeting in Davos to deal with nationwide fuel shortages last week.

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