The CIA has concluded that U.S. diplomats suffering mysterious ailments from the so-called Havana syndrome were not targeted by Russia or another foreign adversary, reports said Wednesday.
NBC News, The New York Times and Politico cited multiple officials with knowledge of a CIA probe on the syndrome’s incidents that first surfaced in 2016, where U.S. and Canadian diplomats reported severe headaches, nausea and possible brain damage after hearing high-pitched sounds in Havana, Cuba.
Since then, diplomats and intelligence officials in different countries have reported similar experiences.
Some U.S. officials and observers have been alleging that the cases were caused by pulsed energy attacks from Russia, China, or Cuba that caused traumatic brain injuries.
The reports said that in an interim finding, the CIA did not rule out the possibility of foreign involvement in about two dozen cases that remain unexplained.
However, sources told the Times that the study found that majority of 1,000 cases can be explained by other external factors, undiagnosed medical conditions or stress, rather than an attack from a foreign power.
“In hundreds of other cases of possible symptoms, the agency has found plausible, alternate explanations,” NBC‘s sources said.
The findings angered victims of the ailments, with some saying the CIA assessment “cannot and must not be the final word on the matter,” according to a statement cited by the Times.
William J Burns, the director of the CIA, said in a statement quoted by the Times that investigations on the syndrome are not yet done. “We will continue the mission to investigate these incidents and provide access to world-class care for those who need it.”
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