No Evidence of ‘Sonic Attacks’ on U.S. Diplomats in Cuba

On January 6 in Havana U.S. Senator Jeff Flake (Rep., AZ) said there was no evidence of “sonic attacks’ on U.S. diplomats in Cuba.[1]

After a meeting that day with Cuban Foreign Minister Bruno Rodriguez and Interior Ministry officials, Flake said that they had told him the U.S. Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) had made four trips to Cuba and had informed Cuban officials that the FBI had not found any evidence of such alleged attacks. Here are the Senator’s actual words to the Associated Press:

  • “The Cuban Interior Ministry is saying the FBI has told them there is no evidence of a sonic attack, even though that term is being used, ‘attack,’ there is no evidence of it. There’s no evidence that somebody purposefully tried to harm somebody. Nobody is saying that these people didn’t experience some event, but there’s no evidence there was a deliberate attack by somebody, either the Cubans or anybody else.”

Flake, a U.S. Senate Foreign Relations Committee member, a frequent visitor to Cuba and an advocate for normalization of U.S. relations with the island, added that previous classified briefings from U.S. officials have left him with no reason to doubt this Cuban briefing.

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[1] Assoc. Press, US Senator Says No Evidence of ‘Sonic Attacks’ in Cuba, N.Y. Times (Jan. 6, 2018).

USCIS Moves Field Office from Havana to Mexico City

On December 22, the U.S. Department of Homeland Security’s Office of U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) announced that effective immediately it will “temporarily suspend operations at its field office in Havana“ and its “field office in Mexico city, Mexico will assume Havana’s jurisdiction, which includes only Cuba.” The stated reason for the change was “staff reductions at the U.S. Embassy in Havana.” Detailed instructions for filing certain forms for individuals living in Cuba are set forth in the USCIS announcement cited below.[1]

This change will have a negative effect on “family reunification and granting of visas,” said Cuba Foreign Minister Bruno Rodriguez Parrilla.

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[1] U.S. Dep’t Homeland Security, Updated USCIS Procedures for Cuba (Dec. 22, 2017); Washington moves its Immigration Office in Cuba to Mexico, Granma (Dec. 23, 2017); Washington decides to move “temporarily” to Mexico its immigration office in Cuba, CubaDebate (Dec. 22, 2017).