President Joe Biden on Friday signed a bill that provide support to diplomats and government officials who have suffered unexplained brain injuries overseas, Axios reports.
As many as 200 Americans have claimed symptoms associated with the so-called “Havana Syndrome,” which was first reported by diplomats in Cuba. Diplomats in China and Europe have since come forward as well.
Hours before Biden signed the bill, police opened an investigation into alleged “Havana Syndrome” cases in the US embassy in Berlin.
A member of the CIA leadership staff reported Havana Syndrome symptoms following a trip to India in September.
Vice President Kamala Harris’ trip to Vietnam in August was briefly delayed due to “unexplained health incidents” in the US Embassy in Hanoi.
Biden bill provides medical care:
"Civil servants, intelligence officers, diplomats, and military personnel all around the world have been affected by anomalous health incidents. Some are struggling with debilitating brain injuries that have curtailed their careers of service to our nation," Biden said in a statement.
"We are bringing to bear the full resources of the U.S. Government to make available first-class medical care to those affected and to get to the bottom of these incidents, including to determine the cause and who is responsible.
Scientists blame bugs, not attacks:
Some have alleged that the brain injuries are the result of mysterious microwave radiation attacks by adversaries but there is no evidence to back these claims.
Others have posited that they could be caused by infectious diseases, pesticide exposure, insects, or mass psychogenic illness.
A declassified 2018 State Department report obtained by BuzzFeed News said the injuries suffered by diplomats in Cuba were likely caused by crickets, not microwave weapons.
Though the report did not conclude what caused the specific injuries, it said that “psychogenic” mass psychology effects may have played a role.
“No plausible single source of energy (neither radio/microwaves nor sonic) can produce both the recorded audio/video signals and the reported medical effects,” the report said. “We believe the recorded sounds are mechanical or biological in origin, rather than electronic. The most likely source is the Indies short-tailed cricket.”
The National Academies of Sciences later published a contradictory report arguing that microwaves were the “most plausible” cause of the symptoms.