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New power network lights Jordan’s largest refugee camp

Some 80,000 Syrians fleeing their country’s bloodshed gain access to nine hours of electricity each day

File: Syrian children play under the heat of the midday sun in the Zaatari refugee camp in Jordan, near the Syrian border, on April 17, 2014. (AP/Khalil Hamra)
File: Syrian children play under the heat of the midday sun in the Zaatari refugee camp in Jordan, near the Syrian border, on April 17, 2014. (AP/Khalil Hamra)

ZAATARI REFUGEE CAMP, Jordan — Jordan’s largest camp for Syrian refugees has switched on a revamped electricity network, equipping 80,000 residents with nine hours of steady power per day.

The new grid is the latest sign of Zaatari camp, set up in 2012, transforming into an established community with some paved streets and busy shopping areas.

Jordan hosts some 650,000 of nearly 5 million Syrians who have fled civil war at home, now in its sixth year.

The new network came on line Thursday, replacing a chaotic tangle of cables run to trailers from power lines meant to light streets. Transformers often blew out from overload.

Refugees welcomed the new system which officials say ensures a fairer distribution of electricity.

The UN refugee agency says the network caps monthly consumption for the camp at $500,000.

Copyright 2016 The Associated Press.

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