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(NYT52) BAGHDAD, Iraq -- Aug. 22, 2007 -- IRAQ-ELECTRICITY -- A web of electrical wires on a street in Karada neighborhood in Baghdad, Iraq, Aug. 16, 2007. Armed groups increasingly control the antiquated switching stations that channel electricity around this country, dividing the national grid into a series of regional fiefdoms that do not share electricity generated locally with Baghdad and other power-starved areas in the center of Iraq, the electricity minister said Wednesday. The loss of central control of Iraq's vast electrical network, has occurred as insurgents, militias and other groups take advantage of the looting after the American-led invasion in 2003 that destroyed automated dispatch centers, said the minister, Karim Wahid, in a briefing with U.S. military officials. (Marko Georgiev/The New York Times)

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