At least five American families connected to the bustling U.S. Embassy in Colombia have been afflicted with the mysterious neurological ailment known as Havana Syndrome, in the latest attack against American diplomatic installations, people familiar with the matter said.
In emails to embassy personnel, sent by Ambassador Philip Goldberg and others and reviewed by the Wall Street Journal, the State Department vowed to address the issue “seriously, with objectivity and with sensitivity,” as they work to determine the scope of the afflictions in one of the U.S.’s most important diplomatic outposts.
The sprawling embassy, one of the largest the U.S. operates in the world, is a target-rich installation of intelligence agents and anti-narcotics operatives, in addition to the usual complement of aid and development workers and diplomats.
The developments come days before Secretary of State Antony Blinken is expected to visit.
Embassy staff were initially alerted to “an unexplained health incident” via email in mid-September. A later email, dated Oct. 1, informed embassy personnel that the regional security office was investigating “additional Anomalous Health Incidents,” the U.S. government’s term for the illness.
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