U.S. says two Cuban diplomats expelled after 'incidents' in Havana

US embassy Cuba

Maxwell added that officials don't have any reason to believe Canadian tourists and other visitors could be affected.

President Trump has criticized the reopening of diplomatic relations with Cuba, calling it "a completely one-sided deal".

According to The Associated Press, the affected Americans were complaining of hearing loss.

President Barack Obama reopened the US embassy in Havana in 2015 following the announcement of a new, pro-Castro American policy that would allow American businesses to further enrich the Castro regime while accepting Raúl Castro's repeated demands that "nothing" would be expected from the regime in return, in particular, respect for worldwide human rights norms.

The Cuban diplomats were ordered to leave the US on May 23, the officials said.

One hypothesis, according to sources who spoke to the BBC, is that the hearing loss could have been caused by a sonic device whose emission of inaudible sound waves could cause deafness if placed outside the diplomats' homes.

The U.S. officials weren't authorized to discuss the investigation publicly and spoke on condition of anonymity.

The information comes a day after the USA government said it believed some of its diplomats in Havana had been targeted with a covert sonic device that left them with severe hearing loss.

"Cuba has never, nor would it ever, allow that the Cuban territory be used for any action against accredited diplomatic agents or their families", said the statement.

In a statement, the Cuban foreign affairs ministry said it launched an investigation after it was informed of the situation by United States officials in February.

The incident caused a diplomatic row between the two countries, leading to two Cuban diplomats being expelled from Washington in May.

The US has also since expelled two Washington-based Cuban diplomats.

She added, "We're taking that situation seriously, and it's under investigation right now".

An investigation to find out what happened is now underway by the FBI and Diplomatic Security Service. American diplomats operating in Cuba are known to be subject to surveillance and harassment, but the latest revelation is a substantial escalation.

Investigators are also considering the possibility that a third country, such as Russian Federation, was behind the incidents, officials familiar with the inquiry told AP.

Nauert said that investigators did not yet have a definitive explanation for the incidents but stressed they take them "very seriously" as shown by the Cuban diplomats' expulsions.

A packed room had expected questions regarding Trump's "fire and fury" comments about North Korea, but CBS News wanted clarification on the "incidents going on in Havana affecting United States workers there".

Speaking to CNN, a United States official added: "We felt like we needed to respond to the Cubans and remind them of their responsibility under the Vienna convention".

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