Cairo power outage halts subway trains to downtown, knocks Tv stations off air

IndustriesAssociated Press

An hours-long power outage in Cairo has halted many subway trains and knocked several TV channels off the air in the Egyptian capital.

The spokesman for the city's metro system, Ahmed Abdel-Hadi, said the trains connecting Cairo's southern suburbs to the downtown were halted on Thursday.

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However, Mohammed al-Yamani, the spokesman for the Ministry of Electricity, claimed the outage was due to routine "maintenance" work.

The outage is the latest in the daily power woes and rolling blackouts that have plagued Egypt in recent months. The energy crunch is linked to shrinking revenues and Egypt's inability to pay off debts to foreign oil companies.

The government recently promised to end the blackouts in four months, partially blaming the outages on attacks by saboteurs on electrical lines.