Officials are investigating two potential “Havana syndrome” attacks on U.S. soil — including one near the White House — following a string of mysterious incidents abroad, CNN reported Thursday.
The suspected attacks, which first occurred in Havana in 2016, have since surfaced in a number of countries, leaving a number of U.S. diplomats and analysts with neurological symptoms ranging from vertigo to insomnia.
According to CNN, one of the attacks took place near the Ellipse, the grassy oval lawn just south of the White House, harming a National Security Council official.
Another U.S.-based incident occurred in a Virginia suburb in 2019 while a White House official was walking her dog.
“The health and well-being of American public servants is a paramount priority for the Biden administration. We take all reports of health incidents by our personnel extremely seriously. The White House is working closely with departments and agencies to address unexplained health incidents and ensure the safety and security of Americans serving around the world,” a White House spokesperson told The Hill.
“Given that we are still evaluating reported incidents and that we need to protect the privacy of individuals reporting incidents, we cannot provide or confirm specific details at this time.”
Some 40 government officials have been hit by the attacks, which a government-funded report by the National Academy of Sciences determined were most likely caused by microwave radiation. The bulk of known cases have been State Department or CIA employees.
The CIA kicked off a task force to support CIA individuals who may have been affected or face a similar attack in the future, while the State Department in March appointed a senior adviser to oversee its existing task force.
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