POWER RESTORED AFTER BLACKOUT HITS JAPANESE CAPITAL

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A temporary blackout affected several government buildings and train services in Tokyo before power was restored late Wednesday afternoon. Japanese news agency Kyodo reported that lights at the Finance Ministry, the Foreign Ministry and other buildings flickered out in the Kasumigaseki district, home to many government offices.

Chief Cabinet Secretary Yoshihide Suga told reporters that the government was verifying information about the blackout and power had been fully restored before 4 p.m. (0700GMT). The Tokyo Electric Power Company Holdings Inc. (TEPCO) said the outage could have been caused by a fire at a facility in Niiza, near Tokyo, where police and firefighters reported smoke at around 2.55 p.m.

Kyodo also quoted an unnamed government source as saying that there were no signs of terrorism in relation to the fire. The outage affected up to 350,000 households and buildings in the Tokyo area, and most train operations were suspended by the Seibu Railway Co.