A police investigation has kicked off in Berlin after several employees at the U.S. Embassy in Berlin reported experiencing symptoms that line up with the mysterious Havana Syndrome that has plagued American embassies around the world for years, and is believed by some officials to be tied to Russian intelligence services.
Police said Friday they are probing multiple cases of an “alleged sonic weapon attack” attack on employees’ of the U.S. Embassy in Berlin, according to Reuters.
They said the investigation was first opened in August, but have not offered more details.
At least two U.S. officials stationed in Germany pursued medical treatment after coming down with Havana Syndrome symptoms, the Wall Street Journal reported in August.
The investigation into Havana Syndrome cases affecting U.S. Embassy workers in Berlin was first reported Friday by German newspaper Der Spiegel.
Here are all the places where possible cases of Havana Syndrome have been reported:
Experts are still unsure what causes the symptoms, but believe it may be caused by pulsed radio frequency energy. People experiencing Havana Syndrome have reported hearing grating sounds. Some victims have had long-lasting health effects, like hearing loss and brain tissue damage. On Friday, President Joe Biden signed a bill into law that will provide additional government support to diplomats and government officials affected by Havana Syndrome. In July, the CIA tassel a top officer who played a key role in finding Osama bin Laden to investigate the syndrome and what causes it.
Havana Syndrome, marked by headaches, nausea, hearing and memory loss, has affected roughly 200 U.S. officials and their family members worldwide. The strange set of symptoms got its name when it first emerged in 2016 and affected American and Canadian diplomatic personnel stationed in Havana, Cuba. Since then, the syndrome has been reported all over the world in China, Russia, Poland, Georgia and Taiwan and most recently among U.S. embassy employees in Vienna. In August, Vice President Kamala Harris’ trip to Vietnam was delayed after at least two Hanoi embassy staff were evacuated over reports of Havana Syndrome fears. U.S. officials have blamed Russian intelligence for the alleged attacks, but Russia denies any involvement. Alexander Bikantov, from the Russian Foreign Ministry’s press department, called the allegations a fake story from “the Russophobic propaganda machine,” according to the Wall Street Journal.