White House aware of reported mystery illness ‘attacks’

Aboard Air Force One: The White House is aware of a media report about potential incidents in the United States in 2019 and 2020 that appear similar to previous suspected “directed” radio frequency attacks that caused a mysterious illness, but could not provide or confirm any details.

The White House was working closely with various US departments and agencies and was still evaluating the situation, which included one attack near the White House, spokeswoman Karine Jean-Pierre said.

One of the attacks reported occurred near the White House.Credit:Getty Images

CNN earlier on Thursday (Friday AEST) reported that American agencies were investigating two possible incidents that appeared similar to a mysterious illness known as “Havana syndrome” that impacted diplomats in Cuba and elsewhere.

One last year occurred near the White House, it said, while another one, previously reported by GQ magazine, sickened a White House official in a nearby Virginia suburb in 2019.

“The health and well being of American public services is a paramount priority for the Biden administration,” Jean-Pierre told reporters aboard Air Force One. “We cannot provide or confirm specific details.”

Where the syndrome first emerged: The US embassy in Havana, Cuba.

More than 40 diplomats and spies as far back as 2016 have reported nausea, headache, dizziness and other unexplained symptoms, triggering intense speculation.

The most probable cause was “directed” radio-frequency energy, a type of radiation that includes microwaves, the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine concluded in a report last year.

In February, the US State Department said an investigation was still ongoing.


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