State Department Evacuates More Americans After Strange Sounds Trigger Mysterious Illnesses In China

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Ryan Pickrell China/Asia Pacific Reporter
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More Americans are falling ill in China with neurological symptoms that plagued U.S. diplomats in Cuba after hearing unusual sounds.

The Department of State evacuated another American employee at the U.S. Consulate in Guangzhou and his family Wednesday, The New York Times reported, adding that a number of other U.S. officials and their families are being tested by a State Department medical team. U.S. officials in China are apparently experiencing symptoms similar to those associated with a “concussion or minor traumatic brain injury,” the State Department revealed.

The American worker pulled out of China was Mark A. Lenzi, a security engineering officer. More evacuations are expected.

The latest incident comes just a few weeks after the State Department issued a health alert triggered by similar problems with another consular employee. A U.S. official working in Guangzhou was diagnosed with a mild traumatic brain injury after experiencing “subtle and vague, but abnormal, sensations of sound and pressure” in late May. (RELATED: US Government Employee Suffers Brain Damage After Possible Sonic Attack In China)

The symptoms reported in China “are very similar and entirely consistent with the medical indications that have taken place to Americans working in Cuba,” Secretary of State Mike Pompeo told the House Foreign Affairs Committee in May. (RELATED: US Orders Majority Of Cuban Embassy Workers Home After 21 Diplomats Attacked)

The U.S. decided to withdraw American officials out of Cuba in 2017 after two dozen diplomats were diagnosed with “mild traumatic brain injury and permanent hearing loss, with such additional symptoms as loss of balance, severe headaches, cognitive disruption, and brain swelling.” There are strong suspicions that U.S. diplomats were hit with targeted sonic attacks.

The cause of the incidents in China are still unexplained, but Pompeo has put together a health team to examine “the unexplained health incidents that have affected a number of U.S. government personnel and family members stationed overseas.”

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