Sonic attack warning issued as U.S. citizens fall ill in China

     MYSTERIOUS US embassy building with the US flag raised over it in Havana

While the cause of the mysterious ailment, which already claimed at least one US official in Guangzhou back in April, is still under scrutiny, US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo last month likened the symptoms displayed by the stricken worker to those experienced by US diplomats in Cuba.

Four American members of staff at the USA consulate in Guangzhou referred Reuters to the Beijing embassy press office when asked about the situation.

There are roughly 170 American diplomats or employees in Guangzhou, as well as their family members, and a senior U.S. official said a sizeable number had undergone or would soon undergo testing by the State Department doctors.

The evacuations of workers in Guangzhou followed medical testing that revealed they might have been affected.

"If there's really a problem then the USA side can directly contact the Chinese side and communicate, and China will continue to conscientiously investigate and coordinate with a responsible attitude", Hua said.

Cuba has denied targeting embassy staff, and the United States has not blamed the country's government for the suspected attacks.

A similar medical mystery started in Cuba in 2016 when American embassy officials and their family members began falling ill.

Nauert also said that remaining U.S. government personnel and their families in Guangzhou would also be able to request testing if they 'noted concerning symptoms or wanted baseline screening'.

Secretary of State Mike Pompeo said at a congressional hearing in May that the symptoms experienced by a U.S. diplomat previous year in Guangzhou "are very similar and entirely consistent with the medical indications that have taken place to Americans working in Cuba".

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.

Symptoms, sounds and sensations reportedly varied dramatically from person to person. In response, it downsized the US diplomatic staff in Havana and prohibited families from joining the diplomats who stayed.

An examination of more than 20 affected individuals, conducted by University of Pennsylvania researchers and later published in the Journal of the American Medical Association, concluded that the staff affected in Cuba "appeared to have sustained injury to widespread brain networks without an associated history of head trauma". They said their experiments managed to replicate the metallic chirping sounds that USA diplomats heard in conjunction with the attacks in Cuba, raising the likelihood that the injuries were the result of ultrasonic signals. The Times reported that the illnesses frayed some diplomatic relations with Cuba, but the recent reports have led others to consider if another country may be involved, including China or Russian Federation.

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