US Secretary of State Rex Tillerson said Sunday that Washington is considering the possibility of closing its embassy in Havana in the wake of a mysterious "sonic attack" that left several of its staff with brain injuries and hearing loss.
"We have it under evaluation", Tillerson said of a possible embassy closure. "It's a very serious issue, with respect to the harm that certain individuals have suffered, and we've brought some of those people home".
President Obama reopened diplomatic ties with Cuba and became first United States president to visit the island since 1928. "It's under review." Of the 21 medically confirmed USA individuals affected, diplomats and their families, some have permanent hearing loss or concussions, while others suffered nausea, headaches and ear-ringing. Some reported vibrations or loud sounds that were only audible in parts of rooms, while others heard nothing but developed symptoms. US officials first confirmed the incidents, which began in late 2016, in August 2017. The government of Cuban President Raul Castro has denied any involvement or responsibility, and insists it is eager to help the USA resolve the matter.
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The U.S. State Department warned would-be travelers to Cuba Monday to "carefully consider the risks" in the aftermath of Hurricane Irma and to avoid hard-hit northcentral Cuba "until further notice".
It hard to believe that the Cuban government would have resorted to armed propaganda by attacking USA embassy staff in Havana.
At least five Canadian diplomats and their families were also affected by "sonic attacks", though none suffered permanent injury, public broadcaster CBC reported Friday. The US hasn't identified either a culprit or a device.
"Cuba's neglect of its duty to protect our diplomats and their families can not go unchallenged", wrote the lawmakers, who included Sen.
Lawmakers in Washington have raised alarm over the incidents.