US staffer suffers brain injury after 'sound' incident in China

An American flag is flown next to the Chinese national emblem during a welcome ceremony for visiting U.S. President Donald Trump

In an alert emailed to United States citizens in China, the embassy said it does not know what caused the symptoms or of any similar situations in the country.

A weird and singular case in China, where a United States government employee stationed in the city of Guangzhou returned to America in April after reporting "subtle and vague, but abnormal, sensations of sound and pressure". The Chinese government has assured the USA that it is investigating the matter and taking appropriate measures, according to a State Department spokesperson.

"The U.S. government is taking these reports seriously and has informed its official staff in China of this event".

The Post reports that Chinese and USA officials are looking into the matter.

The U.S. government said it is taking this incident "seriously".

The U.S. made a decision to withdraw American officials out of the country in 2017 after multiple 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".

The alert said a US government employee in the southern Chinese city of Guangzhou reported "subtle and vague, but abnormal, sensations of sound and pressure". A spokeswoman for the U.S. Embassy in Beijing said that from late 2017 to April 2018, a government employee assigned to Guangzhou reported an unusual physical symptoms.

In the Cuba incident previous year, 21 people fell sick with injuries including hearing loss, cognitive issues and sleep difficulties in what the State Department called an "attack".

Responding to these claims, the Cuban Foreign Ministry denied any Cuban involvement in the alleged attacks.

The department also warned against attempting to locate the source of any unusual sounds. "Various descriptions were given: "a high-pitched beam of sound"; an "incapacitating sound"; a "baffling sensation" akin to driving with the windows partially open in a vehicle; or just an intense pressure in one ear". "Instead, move to a location where the sounds are not present", it says, urging people with medical problems to consult a doctor. The mysterious incident comes at a time of tension between the USA and China over trade disputes.

Staff there reported symptoms including hearing loss, dizziness, fatigue and cognitive issues, though Cuban officials dismissed the idea of acoustic strikes as "science fiction" and accused Washington of slander.

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