- Title: Cuba says investigating "incidents" concerning U.S. diplomats in Havana
- Date: 10th August 2017
- Summary: HAVANA, CUBA (FILE - MARCH 20, 2017) (REUTERS) U.S. FLAG IN FRONT OF THE EMBASSY EXTERIOR OF U.S. EMBASSY
- Embargoed: 24th August 2017 03:28
- Keywords: expelled Washington-based Cuban diplomats physical symptoms Americans
- Location: HAVANA, CUBA
- City: HAVANA, CUBA
- Country: Cuba
- Topics: Government/Politics
- Reuters ID: LVA0056TKOLS7
- Aspect Ratio: 16:9
- Story Text: Cuba said on Wednesday (August 9) it was investigating allegations by the United States that unspecified "incidents" caused physical symptoms in Americans serving at the U.S. Embassy in Havana, after two Washington-based Cuban diplomats were expelled.
"Cuba has never, nor would it ever, allow that the Cuban territory be used for any action against accredited diplomatic agents or their families," the foreign ministry said in a statement late on Wednesday. "It reiterates its willingness to cooperate in the clarification of this situation."
Havana said it had started a "comprehensive, priority and urgent investigation" into the alleged incidents after it had been informed of them by the embassy in February. Earlier on Wednesday, U.S. State Department spokeswoman Heather Nauert told reporters that the exact nature of the incidents was unclear, but Americans serving in Cuba had returned to the United States for non-life-threatening "medical reasons."
The United States first learned of the issues at the embassy in late 2016, she said. As a result, the United States on May 23 asked two Cuban officials in Washington to leave the country and they have done so, Nauert said, an action that Cuba described as "unjustified".
Washington and Havana re-established diplomatic relations in 2015 after more than five decades of hostilities, re-opening embassies in each other's capitals and establishing a new chapter of engagement between the former Cold War foes.
President Donald Trump rolled back part of his predecessor Barack Obama's policy toward Cuba, but has left in place many of the changes, including the re-opened U.S. Embassy in Havana.
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