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State Department Expels 15 Cuban Diplomats from DC Embassy

State Department Expels 15 Cuban Diplomats from DC Embassyā€¯

Mr Tillerson said the United States is maintaining diplomatic relations and will cooperate with Cuba while the investigation continues.

On Tuesday the Trump administration expelled 15 Cuban diplomats after recalling more than half of its own embassy staff from Havana last week.

U.S. Sec. of State Rex Tillerson announced on Tuesday that his department had ordered Cuba to remove 15 of its diplomats from the United States. A fourth source added that the US decision to remove Cuban personnel from its territory was an act of "reciprocity" following the Trump administration's decision earlier this month to remove all nonessential staff from the embassy in Havana. They reported a range of symptoms including hearing loss, dizziness, headaches, fatigue, cognitive issues and difficulty sleeping. "The decision on expulsions was taken due to Cuba's inability to protect our diplomats in Havana as well as to ensue equity in the impact on our respective operations".

Enmanuel Carrasco, center, smiles holding his newly issued US visa as he leaves the USA embassy in Havana, Cuba, Monday, Oct. 2, 2017. Though bona fide diplomats have also been affected, it wasn't until intelligence operatives, working under diplomatic cover, reported freakish sounds and even stranger physical effects that the United States realized something was wrong, several individuals familiar with the situation said.

"The more we escalate tensions with Cuba, the harder it will be to solve this mystery", said Daniel Erikson, a Latin America specialist in the Obama White House and now a managing director of Blue Star Strategies, a consulting firm.

The administration kicked out two diplomats in May due to the illnesses, but officials chose to add more as the list of those affected continues to grow.

USA officials had previously refrained from calling it "attacks", instead using the vague language of "incidents".

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The American Foreign Service Association, or AFSA, is the professional association of the U.S. Foreign Service.

He says that move is needed to "minimize the number of diplomats at risk of exposure to harm".

The U.S. on Friday made dramatic cuts to its diplomatic presence in Cuba and warned Americans to avoid travelling to the island after the attacks, the latest of which happened in August.

USA secretary of state Rex Tillerson had earlier said that kicking out 15 Cuban diplomats would "ensure equity".

03 de octubre de 2017, 17:03Havana, Oct 3 (Prensa Latina) Cuban Foreign Minister Bruno Rodriguez described the decision taken by the US Department of State to expel 15 diplomats from Cuban Embassy in the United States, as an action of political nature with no grounds. Last week, the US announced it was withdrawing 60 percent of the USA diplomats from Cuba because they might be harmed if they stay. The US has said the FBI is leading the investigation. We need to be smart and thoughtful in responding to these attacks.

Remember the diplomatic triumph that was the decision of Barack Obama and John Kerry to restore diplomatic relations with Cuba, despite the communist dictatorship agreeing to absolutely nothing in the realm of human rights improvements or more responsible worldwide behavior?



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