Cuba’s Foreign Minister Bruno Rodríguez accused the United States of lying about the “sonic attacks”against American diplomats staying in Havana in order to damage the two counties’ bilateral relationship.
“I can affirm categorically that whoever claims that these injuries have occurred as a result of the attacks is deliberately lying,” the Cuban Minister of Foreign Affairs said.
The sonic attacks were carried out against officials in the US embassy in Havana. According to officials involved in the case, the attacks began in 2016 and took advantage of the Obama administration’s unprecedented openness with the Raul Castro regime. The attacks, which involved some kind of sonic or shockwave device, reportedly caused hearing loss and nausea.
“These health issues are being used as a pretext of a political nature, with political objectives to eliminate the progress made and to damage our bilateral relationship,” Rodríguez said. “There is no evidence of the occurrence of the alleged incidents.”
“If the US government thinks otherwise, I invite them to present evidence, and to consider the possibility that nobody has committed deliberate acts against the American personnel and their families while they were in Havana,” he added.
— Cancillería de Cuba (@CubaMINREX) November 2, 2017
Rodriguez said that “medical specialists” considered it “impossible for a single cause to explain the diversity of medical signs and symptoms that these diplomats have exhibited” and that “these health conditions can’t be due to a single origin or to a single fact.”
However, US officials have not yet formally blamed the Cuban government for the attacks, which began in late 2016 and ended in last August. In fact, the US has confirmed that it has not ruled out a third party looking to damage the two countries’ relationship.
President Donald Trump has made clear on repeated occasions, however, that Havana is responsible for the security of foreign diplomats according to the Vienna Convention on Diplomatic Relations. For this reason, the US decided to expel Cuban diplomatic personnel staying on American soil.
Additionally, the US government reduced its diplomatic staff at the embassy in Havana and issued a travel warning to its citizens. It has even identified certain places as alleged targets of “acoustic attacks.”
US officials have stated that, so far, more than two dozen diplomats have fallen victim to the alleged attack. Even some tourists related to intelligence officials at the US Embassy have claimed to have suffered similar symptoms.