Officials serving in US diplomatic missions in Geneva and Paris are suspected of suffering from mysterious neurological disease known as Havana syndrome and at least one was taken back to the US for treatment, people familiar with the events said.
Suspected attacks on US officials serving in two European cities were reported internally last summer to officials in those positions and eventually to the State Department in Washington. Diplomat joins more than 200 others who came down with suspected Havana syndrome stationed in china, South America and elsewhere in Europe.
At least three Americans serving at the consulate in Geneva, a city that hosts nearly a dozen major multilateral organizations, were suspected of suffering from the syndrome, which the Biden administration has dubbed an “irreconcilable health phenomenon.” The State Department did not respond to a request for comment, and generally does not comment on reported incidents, citing confidentiality.
In November, Secretary of State Antony Blinken said the administration was “fully focused” on getting to the bottom of these incidents, which he said had caused profound bodily and bodily harm since he was first taken to the US embassy in Havana. Reported by serving diplomats. more than five years ago.
Symptoms include headache, dizziness, cognitive difficulties, tinnitus, vertigo and trouble with vision, hearing and balance. Many officers have suffered symptoms years after reporting an incident, while some have been diagnosed with traumatic brain injuries.
The cases in Geneva and Paris are the latest in Europe, where cases have also been reported in Austria, Serbia and Germany. The Wall Street Journal reported nearly half a dozen recent cases at the massive US Embassy compound in Bogota, Colombia. Suspicious cases have also been reported in consulates in China.
In early October, President Biden signed into law the bipartisan Havana Act—or the Helping American Victims of Neurological Attack Act—that commits the US government to increasing medical aid for officials who are affected.