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More US diplomats fall ill in China after hearing 'odd noises'

08 June, 2018, 10:49 | Author: Lucille Rivera
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     MYSTERIOUS US embassy building with the US flag raised over it in Havana

Late last month, the State Department officially acknowledged that one China-based US employee experienced a "variety of physical symptoms" from late 2017 through April 2018.

USA experts have said they know of no technology that would explain the symptoms.

Lenzi said they began hearing odd sounds in April 2017, which he compared to rolling marbles with static.

Another diplomat who reported symptoms was at a different upscale building near the consulate, the paper said. China says it has uncovered no information that could point to a cause.

The State Department did not provide names or exact numbers, but Mark Lenzi, a Foreign Service officer, told the Washington Post that he and his family are among those being evacuated. Former State Department officials and diplomatic experts have pointed to similar incidents causing permanent cognitive issues occurring against USA diplomats in Russian Federation during the Cold War.

On Wednesday, the U.S. State Department evacuated at least two more American workers experiencing unusual health symptoms from their consulate in Guangzhou, China.

If this case sound eerily familiar, it should. Starting in 2016, US representatives in Cuba experienced hearing loss and and other cognitive problems usually associated with concussions and other trauma to the head. Since then, 24 Americans stationed in Havana have experienced dizziness, headaches, fatigue, hearing loss and cognitive issues, the State Department said.

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In the wake of the initial illnesses, speculation on the cause included the possibility of targeted sonic attacks that might cause such disruption. The United States also expelled 15 Cuban diplomats in retaliation, accusing Cuba of failing to protect American envoys. Other competing theories being suggested include toxins, malfunctioning listening devices or even mass hysteria.

The State Department acknowledged the Lenzi incident late last month.

A USA medical team has been screening more personnel and their family members who work in Guangzhou this week in order to determine who may have been affected.

The Embassy Beijing and five US consulates in China, she said, held "townhall meetings" on May 23 "to allow employees to ask questions and raise concerns directly with senior leadership".

Consulate in the southern city of Guangzhou were evacuated from China on Wednesday, after experiencing headaches, sleeplessness and nausea. Some attachés tell stories of playing along with the status quo by asking aloud in their homes for help finding missing items such as vehicle keys and glasses.

The most recent evacuations followed medical testing that revealed they might have been affected.

Reacting to the reports of the mysterious sound attacks on the USA diplomats, Foreign Ministry spokesperson Hua Chunying told a media briefing on Thursday that Beijing had investigated the May 23 allegation and found no clue. The man smiled about a split second after I took this shot.

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