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RTX6DFKX
Venezuela struggles to keep the lights on
Across Maracaibo, the capital of Venezuela's largest state, residents unplug refrigerators to guard against power surges. Many only buy food they will consume the same day. Others regularly sleep outside.

The rolling blackouts in the state of Zulia pile more misery on Venezuelans living under a fifth year of an economic crisis that has sparked malnutrition, hyperinflation and mass emigration. The OPEC member's once-thriving socialist economy has collapsed since the 2014 fall of oil prices.

"I never thought I would have to go through this," said bakery worker Cindy Morales, 36, her eyes welling with tears. "I don't have food, I don't have power, I don't have money."

Zulia, the historic heart of Venezuela's energy industry that was for decades known for opulent oil wealth, has been plunged into darkness for several hours a day since March, sometimes leaving its 3.7 million residents with no electricity for up to 24 hours.
VENEZUELA-POWER/
RTX6DFF2
July 31, 2018
Americo Fernandez uses a candle to illuminate the kitchen at his home during a blackout in Maracaibo,...
Maracaibo, Venezuela
Americo Fernandez uses a candle to illuminate the kitchen at his home during a blackout in Maracaibo
Americo Fernandez uses a candle to illuminate the kitchen at his home during a blackout in Maracaibo, Venezuela July 25, 2018. Picture taken July 25, 2018. REUTERS/Marco Bello
VENEZUELA-POWER/
RTX6DFG1
July 31, 2018
Legs of Sibilina Caro are seen as she rest on bed at her daughter Judith Palmar home in Maracaibo, Venezuela...
Maracaibo, Venezuela
Legs of Sibilina Caro are seen as she rest on bed at her daughter Judith Palmar home in Maracaibo
Legs of Sibilina Caro are seen as she rest on bed at her daughter Judith Palmar home in Maracaibo, Venezuela July 25, 2018. Picture taken July 25, 2018. REUTERS/Marco Bello
VENEZUELA-POWER/
RTX6DFFY
July 31, 2018
Judith Palmar mops her home in Maracaibo, Venezuela July 25, 2018. Picture taken July 25, 2018. REUTERS/Marco...
Maracaibo, Venezuela
Judith Palmar mops her home in Maracaibo
Judith Palmar mops her home in Maracaibo, Venezuela July 25, 2018. Picture taken July 25, 2018. REUTERS/Marco Bello
VENEZUELA-POWER/
RTX6DFEX
July 31, 2018
People set up a pump and fill buckets with water from a pipe in a street of Maracaibo, Venezuela July...
Maracaibo, Venezuela
People set up a pump and fill buckets with water from a pipe in a street of Maracaibo
People set up a pump and fill buckets with water from a pipe in a street of Maracaibo, Venezuela July 26, 2018. Picture taken July 26, 2018. REUTERS/Marco Bello
VENEZUELA-POWER/
RTX6DFFG
July 31, 2018
Bread for sale are seen in a shelf of the bakery of Annie Salazar at Rafael Urdaneta slum in Maracaibo,...
Maracaibo, Venezuela
Bread for sale are seen in a shelf of the bakery of Annie Salazar at Rafael Urdaneta slum in Maracaibo...
Bread for sale are seen in a shelf of the bakery of Annie Salazar at Rafael Urdaneta slum in Maracaibo, Venezuela July 25, 2018. Picture taken July 25, 2018. REUTERS/Marco Bello
VENEZUELA-POWER/
RTX6DFFX
July 31, 2018
People walk by a dirt road at Rafael Urdaneta slum in Maracaibo, Venezuela July 25, 2018. Picture taken...
Maracaibo, Venezuela
People walk by a dirt road at Rafael Urdaneta slum in Maracaibo
People walk by a dirt road at Rafael Urdaneta slum in Maracaibo, Venezuela July 25, 2018. Picture taken July 25, 2018. REUTERS/Marco Bello
VENEZUELA-POWER/
RTX6DFF1
July 31, 2018
People wait for public transportation in Maracaibo, Venezuela July 26, 2018. Picture taken July 26, 2018....
Maracaibo, Venezuela
People wait for public transportation in Maracaibo
People wait for public transportation in Maracaibo, Venezuela July 26, 2018. Picture taken July 26, 2018. REUTERS/Marco Bello
VENEZUELA-POWER/
RTX6DFEZ
July 31, 2018
Elizabeth Altuve climbs the stairs at the occupied building where she lives in Maracaibo, Venezuela July...
Maracaibo, Venezuela
Elizabeth Altuve climbs the stairs at the occupied building where she lives in Maracaibo
Elizabeth Altuve climbs the stairs at the occupied building where she lives in Maracaibo, Venezuela July 26, 2018. Picture taken July 26, 2018. REUTERS/Marco Bello
VENEZUELA-POWER/
RTX6DFEY
July 31, 2018
Electrical posts and power lines are seen at sunset during a blackout in Maracaibo, Venezuela July 26,...
Maracaibo, Venezuela
Electrical posts and power lines are seen at sunset during a blackout in Maracaibo
Electrical posts and power lines are seen at sunset during a blackout in Maracaibo, Venezuela July 26, 2018. Picture taken July 26, 2018. REUTERS/Marco Bello
VENEZUELA-POWER/
RTX6DFEV
July 31, 2018
A main highway is seen during rush hour in Maracaibo, Venezuela July 26, 2018. Picture taken July 26,...
Maracaibo, Venezuela
A main highway is seen during rush hour in Maracaibo
A main highway is seen during rush hour in Maracaibo, Venezuela July 26, 2018. Picture taken July 26, 2018. REUTERS/Marco Bello
VENEZUELA-POWER/
RTX6DFFW
July 31, 2018
People walk past basic staples for sale at Las Pulgas market in Maracaibo, Venezuela July 26, 2018. Picture...
Maracaibo, Venezuela
People walk past basic staples for sale at Las Pulgas market in Maracaibo
People walk past basic staples for sale at Las Pulgas market in Maracaibo, Venezuela July 26, 2018. Picture taken July 26, 2018. REUTERS/Marco Bello
VENEZUELA-POWER/
RTX6DFFU
July 31, 2018
Cindy Morales pulls a mattress out of a room at her home during a blackout in Maracaibo, Venezuela July...
Maracaibo, Venezuela
Cindy Morales pulls a mattress out of a room at her home during a blackout in Maracaibo
Cindy Morales pulls a mattress out of a room at her home during a blackout in Maracaibo, Venezuela July 25, 2018. Picture taken July 25, 2018. REUTERS/Marco Bello
VENEZUELA-POWER/
RTX6DFFT
July 31, 2018
Matilde Balza takes a recipient out of the refrigerator her home at Rafael Urdaneta slum in Maracaibo,...
Maracaibo, Venezuela
Matilde Balza takes a recipient out of the refrigerator her home at Rafael Urdaneta slum in Maracaibo...
Matilde Balza takes a recipient out of the refrigerator her home at Rafael Urdaneta slum in Maracaibo, Venezuela July 25, 2018. Picture taken July 25, 2018. REUTERS/Marco Bello
VENEZUELA-POWER/
RTX6DFFS
July 31, 2018
A man walks out an alley at Las Pulgas market in Maracaibo, Venezuela July 26, 2018. Picture taken July...
Maracaibo, Venezuela
A man walks out an alley at Las Pulgas market in Maracaibo
A man walks out an alley at Las Pulgas market in Maracaibo, Venezuela July 26, 2018. Picture taken July 26, 2018. REUTERS/Marco Bello
VENEZUELA-POWER/
RTX6DFFR
July 31, 2018
Ismael, son of Cindy Morales, lays down in a mattress at the porch of their home during a blackout in...
Maracaibo, Venezuela
Ismael, son of Cindy Morales, lays down in a mattress at the porch of their home during a blackout in...
Ismael, son of Cindy Morales, lays down in a mattress at the porch of their home during a blackout in Maracaibo, Venezuela July 25, 2018. Picture taken July 25, 2018. REUTERS/Marco Bello
VENEZUELA-POWER/
RTX6DFFQ
July 31, 2018
Judith Palmar holds her mother Sibilina Caro hand after feeding her at their home in Maracaibo, Venezuela...
Maracaibo, Venezuela
Judith Palmar holds her mother Sibilina Caro hand after feeding her at their home in Maracaibo
Judith Palmar holds her mother Sibilina Caro hand after feeding her at their home in Maracaibo, Venezuela July 25, 2018. Picture taken July 25, 2018. REUTERS/Marco Bello
VENEZUELA-POWER/
RTX6DFFP
July 31, 2018
A woman holds a banner that reads "In Zulia what we have are blackouts for granted" in front of a facility...
Maracaibo, Venezuela
A woman holds a banner that reads "In Zulia what we have are blackouts for granted" during a protest...
A woman holds a banner that reads "In Zulia what we have are blackouts for granted" in front of a facility of the national electricity company Corpoelec during a protest against chronic blackouts and shortages of water in Maracaibo, Venezuela July 26, 2018. Picture taken July 26, 2018. REUTERS/Marco Bello
VENEZUELA-POWER/
RTX6DFFO
July 31, 2018
Cindy Morales cries at the entrance of her home during a blackout in Maracaibo, Venezuela July 25, 2018....
Maracaibo, Venezuela
Cindy Morales cries at the entrance of her home during a blackout in Maracaibo
Cindy Morales cries at the entrance of her home during a blackout in Maracaibo, Venezuela July 25, 2018. Picture taken July 25, 2018. REUTERS/Marco Bello
VENEZUELA-POWER/
RTX6DFFN
July 31, 2018
People block a street in protest during a blackout in Maracaibo, Venezuela July 26, 2018. Picture taken...
Maracaibo, Venezuela
People block a street in protest during a blackout in Maracaibo
People block a street in protest during a blackout in Maracaibo, Venezuela July 26, 2018. Picture taken July 26, 2018. REUTERS/Marco Bello
VENEZUELA-POWER/
RTX6DFFM
July 31, 2018
A street light post and power lines are seen at sunset during a blackout in Maracaibo, Venezuela July...
Maracaibo, Venezuela
A street light post and power lines are seen at sunset during a blackout in Maracaibo
A street light post and power lines are seen at sunset during a blackout in Maracaibo, Venezuela July 25, 2018. Picture taken July 25, 2018. REUTERS/Marco Bello
VENEZUELA-POWER/
RTX6DFFK
July 31, 2018
A man stands next to a pile of garbage on the shores of Lake Maracaibo in Maracaibo, Venezuela July 26,...
Maracaibo, Venezuela
A man stands next to a pile of garbage on the shores of Lake Maracaibo in Maracaibo
A man stands next to a pile of garbage on the shores of Lake Maracaibo in Maracaibo, Venezuela July 26, 2018. Picture taken July 26, 2018. REUTERS/Marco Bello
VENEZUELA-POWER/
RTX6DFFJ
July 31, 2018
A car drives past a pile of burning garbage at the parking lot of Las Pulgas market in Maracaibo, Venezuela...
Maracaibo, Venezuela
A car drives past a pile of burning garbage at the parking lot of Las Pulgas market in Maracaibo
A car drives past a pile of burning garbage at the parking lot of Las Pulgas market in Maracaibo, Venezuela July 26, 2018. Picture taken July 26, 2018. REUTERS/Marco Bello
VENEZUELA-POWER/
RTX6DFF8
July 31, 2018
Ismael, son of Cindy Morales, lays down in a mattress at the porch of their home during a blackout in...
Maracaibo, Venezuela
Ismael, son of Cindy Morales, lays down in a mattress at the porch of their home during a blackout in...
Ismael, son of Cindy Morales, lays down in a mattress at the porch of their home during a blackout in Maracaibo, Venezuela July 25, 2018. Picture taken July 25, 2018. REUTERS/Marco Bello
VENEZUELA-POWER/
RTX6DFF7
July 31, 2018
Electrical posts and power lines are seen at sunset during a blackout in Maracaibo, Venezuela July 25,...
Maracaibo, Venezuela
Electrical posts and power lines are seen at sunset during a blackout in Maracaibo
Electrical posts and power lines are seen at sunset during a blackout in Maracaibo, Venezuela July 25, 2018. Picture taken July 25, 2018. REUTERS/Marco Bello
VENEZUELA-POWER/
RTX6DFF6
July 31, 2018
Cindy Morales stands at the door to the backyard at her home during a blackout in Maracaibo, Venezuela...
Maracaibo, Venezuela
Cindy Morales stands at the door to the backyard at her home during a blackout in Maracaibo
Cindy Morales stands at the door to the backyard at her home during a blackout in Maracaibo, Venezuela July 25, 2018. Picture taken July 25, 2018. REUTERS/Marco Bello
VENEZUELA-POWER/
RTX6DFF5
July 31, 2018
Cindy Morales stands at the door to the backyard at her home during a blackout in Maracaibo, Venezuela...
Maracaibo, Venezuela
Cindy Morales stands at the door to the backyard at her home during a blackout in Maracaibo
Cindy Morales stands at the door to the backyard at her home during a blackout in Maracaibo, Venezuela July 25, 2018. Picture taken July 25, 2018. REUTERS/Marco Bello
VENEZUELA-POWER/
RTX6DFF4
July 31, 2018
People block a street in protest during a blackout in Maracaibo, Venezuela July 26, 2018. Picture taken...
Maracaibo, Venezuela
People block a street in protest during a blackout in Maracaibo
People block a street in protest during a blackout in Maracaibo, Venezuela July 26, 2018. Picture taken July 26, 2018. REUTERS/Marco Bello
VENEZUELA-POWER/
RTX6DFF3
July 31, 2018
A CLAP box, a Venezuelan government handout of basic food supplies, is seen amid garbage dump along a...
Maracaibo, Venezuela
A CLAP box, a Venezuelan government handout of basic food supplies, is seen amid garbage dump along a...
A CLAP box, a Venezuelan government handout of basic food supplies, is seen amid garbage dump along a canal in Maracaibo, Venezuela July 26, 2018. Picture taken July 26, 2018. REUTERS/Marco Bello
VENEZUELA-POWER/
RTX6DFF0
July 31, 2018
Traffic and pedestrians are seen at sunset during a blackout in Maracaibo, Venezuela July 26, 2018. Picture...
Maracaibo, Venezuela
Traffic and pedestrians are seen at sunset during a blackout in Maracaibo
Traffic and pedestrians are seen at sunset during a blackout in Maracaibo, Venezuela July 26, 2018. Picture taken July 26, 2018. REUTERS/Marco Bello
VENEZUELA-POWER/
RTX6DFEQ
July 31, 2018
Elizabeth Altuve poses for a photo at the occupied building where she lives in Maracaibo, Venezuela July...
Maracaibo, Venezuela
Elizabeth Altuve poses for a photo at the occupied building where she lives in Maracaibo
Elizabeth Altuve poses for a photo at the occupied building where she lives in Maracaibo, Venezuela July 26, 2018. Picture taken July 26, 2018. REUTERS/Marco Bello
VENEZUELA-POWER/CARACAS
RTX6DGFC
July 31, 2018
People use light from phones while they help Olimpia Mora, who is in a wheelchair, to go out from a building...
Caracas, Venezuela
People use light from phones while they help Olimpia Mora, who is in a wheelchair, to go out from a building...
People use light from phones while they help Olimpia Mora, who is in a wheelchair, to go out from a building during a blackout in Caracas, Venezuela July 31, 2018. REUTERS/Carlos Garcia Rawlins
VENEZUELA-POWER/CARACAS
RTX6DGES
July 31, 2018
People use light from phones while they walk on the staircase of a building during a blackout in Caracas,...
Caracas, Venezuela
People use light from phones while they walk on the staircase of a building during a blackout in Caracas...
People use light from phones while they walk on the staircase of a building during a blackout in Caracas, Venezuela July 31, 2018. REUTERS/Carlos Garcia Rawlins
VENEZUELA-POWER/CARACAS
RTX6DGJS
July 31, 2018
A private security guard stands close to the entrance of a parking garage during a blackout in Caracas,...
Caracas, Venezuela
A private security guard stands close to the entrance of a parking garage during a blackout in Caracas...
A private security guard stands close to the entrance of a parking garage during a blackout in Caracas, Venezuela July 31, 2018. REUTERS/Carlos Garcia Rawlins TPX IMAGES OF THE DAY
VENEZUELA-POWER/CARACAS
RTX6DGHZ
July 31, 2018
People speak in front of a restaurant at a shopping mall as they wait for the power to be restored during...
Caracas, Venezuela
People speak in front of a restaurant at a shopping mall as they wait for the power to be restored during...
People speak in front of a restaurant at a shopping mall as they wait for the power to be restored during a blackout in Caracas, Venezuela July 31, 2018. REUTERS/Carlos Garcia Rawlins
VENEZUELA-POWER/CARACAS
RTX6DGGG
July 31, 2018
People wait at the emergency area of a clinic during a blackout in Caracas, Venezuela July 31, 2018....
Caracas, Venezuela
People wait at the emergency area of a clinic during a blackout in Caracas
People wait at the emergency area of a clinic during a blackout in Caracas, Venezuela July 31, 2018. REUTERS/Marco Bello
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