China Has No Evidence of Alleged Illness of US Diplomats

China Has No Evidence of Alleged Illness of US Diplomats

A US State Department official has confirmed with Sputnik that two individuals from the US Embassy in Cuba are undergoing medical evaluations and may possibly be new cases in a string of mysterious illnesses that have struck diplomats at the diplomatic facility.

The U.S. Embassy in China on Friday sent out an alert to Americans traveling overseas that they needed to seek medical attention immediately if they start to experience similar symptoms shared by U.S. staffers in China and Cuba.

The State Department said on Friday the cases were similar to those of 24 diplomats and family members taken ill through 2017, leading to a drawdown of personnel in Havana to a skeleton staff and the expulsion of 17 Cuban diplomats from Washington.

Several also reported hearing odd sounds before experiencing symptoms, leading investigators to initially suspect that some sort of sonic device was responsible. The United States has said it doesn't know who is behind it, but has argued Cuba is responsible for protecting all diplomats on its soil. It is also the only USA diplomatic installation in China authorized to process immigrant visas and handle adoptions.

China earlier said it had looked into the case announced last month but came up with no clues about the cause of the symptoms.

Those affected have suffered a range of symptoms including hearing loss, dizziness, fatigue, cognitive issues and sleep loss.

China Has No Evidence of Alleged Illness of US Diplomats

According to the Secretary of State, the government employee has "very similar" medical assessments "completely consistent" with those experienced by USA diplomats while working in Havana, Cuba. "Instead, move to a different location".

Asked about the latest incidents, Chinese Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Hua Chunying said Thursday that the USA had not formally raised the matter with Beijing.

The medical screenings in China are continuing, Nauert said.

The symptoms are similar to those exhibited by USA personnel in Cuba after they heard unusual noises in an apparent sonic attack.

Of the roughly 170 American consulate staffers and family members in Guangzhou, about 150 sought the offered preliminary medical examinations, according to officials familiar with the process. Most of the incidents were accompanied by freakish, unexplained sounds that initially led USA investigators to suspect a sonic attack.

It serves four southern provinces with a combined population of more than 204 million and processes more than 1 million visa applications of all types annually. There are about 170 USA diplomats or employees and their families in Guangzhou.

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