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Russia rejects evidence blaming it for 'Havana Syndrome' that targetted foreign diplomats, spies

The Kremlin has rejected allegations linking Russian military intelligence to the "Havana syndrome" affecting US diplomats and spies worldwide. An investigative report suggested Russia's GRU Unit 29155 might be responsible, using supersonic weapons and radio frequencies. 

Russia rejects evidence blaming it for 'Havana Syndrome' that targetted foreign diplomats, spies
First Published Apr 1, 2024, 6:55 PM IST

The Kremlin dismissed allegations that Russian military intelligence could be responsible for the mysterious 'Havana syndrome' ailment affecting United States diplomats and spies worldwide. Amid heightened tensions between Russia and the United States, an investigative report suggested a secretive Russian assassination unit might have caused the syndrome, which has plagued numerous US personnel and their families.

The report, a five-year probe by The Insider, a Russian investigative website, along with the German news magazine Der Spiegel and CBS's '60 Minutes', implicated Russia's GRU Unit 29155. It alleged the unit used supersonic weapons and radio frequencies to target victims' brains, contrary to US intelligence agencies' statements, which deemed it unlikely that a foreign adversary was responsible.

Greg Edgreen, a retired Army lieutenant colonel who led the Defense Intelligence Agency's investigation into the syndrome, accused the Russian regime of undisclosed attacks on the US. He claimed that top-performing intelligence officers, particularly those focused on Russia, were affected by the syndrome.

'Havana Syndrome' victims experience hearing loss, insomnia, memory loss, balance issues, and concentration difficulties. The term originated from US Embassy staff in Cuba falling ill in late 2016, though earlier cases from 2014 involving Americans in Frankfurt and CIA officers in Ukraine have been reported.

The Kremlin, through spokesperson Dmitry Peskov, dismissed the report as media exaggeration and baseless accusations against Russia. Peskov stated that no convincing evidence supported such claims, despite the syndrome being associated with accusations against Russia for years.

The FBI, White House, and US State Department are yet to comment on the matter.

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