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US: A few visitors to Cuba claim symptoms similar to attacks

October 6, 2017
Associated Press

WASHINGTON (AP) — The United States has received "a handful of reports" from American citizens who say they've experienced symptoms similar to those in attacks of U.S. government workers in Havana, a State Department official said Friday.

The U.S. isn't vouching for the reports. In a security notice Friday to American citizens, the State Department said Americans who believe they may have symptoms after visiting Cuba should "consult a medical professional."

The United States last week issued a travel warning that urges American travelers to stay away from Cuba. The warning said attacks on government personnel have occurred in Havana hotels and the U.S. can't make sure that Americans who stay at hotels wouldn't be harmed.

Since the travel warning was issued, some citizens reported having similar symptoms after traveling to Cuba. But the U.S. government has "no way of verifying" whether they were harmed by the same attacks that have targeted government employees, said the official, who wasn't authorized to comment by name and spoke on condition of anonymity.

In the security warning, the State Department also said it had "imposed limitations" on American government personnel staying at two Havana hotels: Hotel Nacional and Hotel Capri.

The Associated Press disclosed last month that the Capri was among the locations where Americans have been attacked. The State Department confirmed that Friday and said that Nacional was another site where attacks occurred.

The U.S. didn't describe in detail the limitations on U.S. government workers staying at those two hotels. Typically, in instances where the State Department is concerned a particular site may be unsafe, U.S. personnel are prohibited from staying there.


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