State Department workers stationed at the US embassy in Cuba were victims of a silent “acoustic attack” — in which sonic weapons were used to induce hearing loss, officials said Wednesday.
Several employees were subjected to the alleged strike sometime in 2016 and all experienced an array of physical symptoms similar to a concussion,according to CNN.
Officials told the outlet that at least two people suffered serious health problems and needed to be brought from Havana to the US for treatment — and one person was believed to have suffered permanent hearing loss.
“It’s very strange,” one official said in reference to the method of attack, which still remains a mystery.
“Because there are a variety of symptoms, there could be a variety of sources,” another official said. “That is why we are being very careful here with what we say. There is a lot we still don’t know.”
“It can be quite serious,” an official said. “We have worked with the Cubans to try and find out what is going on. They insist they don’t know, but it has been very worrying and troublesome.”
The FBI is reportedly looking into the matter while the State Department works to try and get to the bottom of things, as well.
“We don’t have any definitive answers about the source or the cause of what we consider to be incidents,” department spokeswoman Heather Nauert said Wednesday during a press briefing.
She added that the US had expelled two Cuban diplomats from the nation’s embassy in Washington back in May as a result of the attack.
“The Cuban government has a responsibility and an obligation under the Geneva convention to protect our diplomats,” Nauert said. “That is part of the reason why this is such a major concern of ours.”
Speaking to CNN, a US official added: “We felt like we needed to respond to the Cubans and remind them of their responsibility under the Vienna convention.”
The Cuban Ministry of Foreign Affairs on Wednesday denied any involvement in the attack, saying the decision to remove the Cuban diplomats was “unjustified and unfounded.”
“The Ministry emphatically emphasizes that Cuba has never allowed…Cuban territory to be used for any action against accredited diplomatic officials or their families, without exception,” they said in a statement.
Credit: NY Post