Washington pledges to solve the mystery of the “Havana Syndrome” that plagues diplomats

Washington pledges to solve the mystery of the "Havana Syndrome" that plagues diplomats

On Friday, November 5, US Secretary of State Anthony Blinken pledged:Let all the light shine” employment “Havana – Syndrome“A mysterious evil that plagues American diplomats around the world, sometimes compared to”sonic attacksSome attribute it to Russia.

He announced the appointments of experienced diplomats: Jonathan Moore, who will be responsible for coordinating the State Department’s response, and Margaret O’Hara, who will ensure anyone who reports symptoms receives appropriate medical care.

The”Abnormal health accidentsAs they are called in administrative jargon, it first appeared in Cuba in 2016, where American diplomats, after hearing high-pitched voices, began to complain of severe migraines, dizziness or nausea. Brain damage was observed. Since then, successive cases have been reported in China, Germany, Australia, Russia, Austria and even Washington.

Don’t be afraid of ‘stigma’

The Ministry of Foreign Affairs refuses to give an estimate of the number of affected. “200 cases have been reported“Confirmed or suspected,” a source familiar with the case told AFP. Some have publicly complained in the past that they weren’t taken seriously enough.

In return, Anthony Blinken on Friday called on every diplomat involved to come forward without fear of exposure.”stigma“Don’t climb this”negative effects». «All of us in the United States government, and especially in the State Department, are absolutely determined to expose the cause and perpetrators of these incidents, care for those affected and protect our colleagues.“, He said. “We rely on all the capabilities of our intelligence services. We hire the best scientific minds, inside the department but also abroad“To succeed.

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He said the alleged victims had been under care since last month at Johns Hopkins University Hospital, a well-known facility in Baltimore, near Washington. Diplomats are now subject to extensive neurological, auditory and ophthalmological examinations before leaving abroad.”To have a basis for comparison if they later report an abnormal health incidentThe Minister of Foreign Affairs explained this in more detail. From the start, US officials were reluctant, with some officials downplaying symptoms sometimes attributed to stress, while others specifically cited the possibility of radio wave attacks and questioned countries like Russia.

But this hypothesis is also called into question by some scientists, who consider it a common cause of all reported cases to be unlikely.

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