A U.S. medical team was screening more Americans who work at the consulate in southern China as the State Department confirmed evacuating a number of government employees who experienced unexplained health issues like those that have hurt U.S. personnel in Cuba and China.
The evacuations of workers in Guangzhou followed medical testing that revealed they might have been affected. State Department spokeswoman Heather Nauert said “a number of individuals” had been brought to the U.S. but didn’t say how many were affected or evacuated. A previous case in Guangzhou, disclosed last month, prompted the tests.
Nauert also said that remaining U.S. government personnel and their families in Guangzhou would also be able to request testing if they “noted concerning symptoms or wanted baseline screening.”
The incidents have raised fears the unexplained issues that started in Cuba in 2016 have expanded. The U.S. government has deemed those incidents “specific attacks” on American workers but hasn’t publicly identified a cause or culprit. Most of the incidents were accompanied by bizarre, unexplained sounds that initially led U.S. investigators to suspect a sonic attack.
Symptoms have included dizziness, headaches and an inability to concentrate. The American government worker who previously was removed from China reported “subtle and vague, but abnormal, sensations of sound and pressure,” the Guangzhou consulate reported last month