A widespread blackout has knocked out power to large parts of the small, oil-rich Gulf nation of Kuwait.

Residents took to social media Wednesday evening to report the power cut, which was confirmed by witnesses reached by phone.

The Electricity and Water Ministry said in a statement to the official Kuwait News Agency that a technical problem involving one of the country's main power grids was to blame.

It says much of the country is affected, and that it is working to restore power.

Witnesses say disabled traffic lights have snarled traffic on major roads.