'Sonic attack' fears as more United States diplomats fall ill in China

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

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

"As soon as the State Department received medical confirmation that one USA government employee had suffered a medical incident that was consistent with what American personnel in Havana, Cuba had experienced, the State Department deployed a medical team to Guangzhou, China to conduct a medical screening of all US government employees and family members who requested it", agency spokesperson Heather Nauert said in a statement.

"At present, there's been no discovery of clues or the reason causing the situation the United States mentioned", Hua told a regular news briefing in Beijing, adding that China protected diplomats according to worldwide convention.

State Department spokeswoman Heather Nauert said "a number of individuals" had been brought to the USA but did not say how many were affected or evacuated. The task force, which was touted by Pompeo last month, will be an umbrella body to investigate, identify and treat the diplomatic staff and their close ones who were subjected to the attacks.

The State Department evacuated at least two more Americans from the US consulate in Guangzhou, China, on Wednesday after they began showing signs of a mysterious illness, The New York Times reported. The U.S. diplomatic staff in Havana was reduced, and 15 Cuban diplomats were expelled from the U.S.

The evacuated Americans have been transferred to the same facility at the University of Pennsylvania where the government workers in Cuba were sent, an unnamed USA official told The Associated Press.

Most of the incidents were accompanied by freaky, unexplained sounds that initially led U.S. investigators to suspect a sonic attack.

Symptoms have included dizziness, headaches and an inability to concentrate.

The New York Times reported Wednesday that the State Department has evacuated at least two workers at the Guangzhou consulate, identifying one of them as Mark A. Lenzi, a security engineering officer.

As per Reuters, US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo expressed concerns over the matter which he termed as a "serious medical incident".

An employee first fell sick last month in China, and now another employee, his wife and their two children were evacuated after the adults showed signs of neurological symptoms.

Speaking on Wednesday, Nauert also confirmed that doctors would examine whether the symptoms were consistent with those reported by dozens of staff at the United States embassy in Havana, Cuba.

The State Department said it suspects the noises were part of a targeted attack, and accused Cuba of not doing enough to protect American diplomats.

People working in The Canton Place complex, a few miles from the consulate, said they were just hearing about the incidents, reflecting a lack of coverage in China's entirely state-controlled media.

It serves four southern provinces with a combined population of more than 204 million and processes more than 1 million visa applications of all types annually.

"Relevant authorities of China have conducted investigations and given the feedback to the US".

Aled Williams, a British teacher at a kindergarten said the reports sounded "sci-fi-ish".

"For me I feel it's very unusual".

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