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Statement from the Cuban Society of Otorhinolaryngology and Head and Neck Surgery

As it has been informed in several news media, the American government has notified to the Cuban authorities the alleged occurrence of “acoustic attacks” against some officials of its diplomatic seat in Havana. According to the State Department of that country, these events started since November 2016, however, it was not until February 2017 that the Cuban State learned of these via an official note delivered to our Ministry of Foreign Affairs. The reported symptoms were: deafness, tinnitus, and disequilibrium, general physical discomfort, headaches, a feeling of pressure, cognitive disorders and a head concussion was even reported.

As soon as that information was made public it became a concern for Cuban ENTs and other related disciplines. Scientific research conducted by an Experts Committee, officially created to this effect, determined it is impossible that the symptoms referred by the US government were caused by a “sonic weapon”. On the other hand, toxicity and viral infections were also ruled out. All of the information gathered followed a document called “Medical Report” delivered to our Foreign Affairs Ministry and which lacks objective proof backing the American hypothesis. Concretely, it does not have the scientific requirements of the usual medical practice and Evidence Based Medicine.

Cuban and American ENTs have maintained a close academic relation, and an environment of ethics, transparency and friendship. For that reason, we reject the accusations related to the alleged sonic attacks and urge the American government to show medical evidence supporting such attribution. We found very worrisome the recent measures of the US government, damaging the free exchange between professionals and scientist of both countries.

We express our desire for the recovery of those diplomats and family members who might be sick, and the will to contribute to their recovery. We invite the homologue societies in America and the rest of the world to join this concern, and divulge its content and contribute to preserve scientific relations among health care professionals in the world, pursuant to our ethical duty to clarify the truth.

Cuban Society of Otorhinolaryngology and Head and Neck Surgery

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