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US officials suspect Russia in mystery ‘attacks’ on diplomats in Cuba, China

Intelligence agencies investigating mysterious “attacks” that led to brain injuries in U.S. personnel in Cuba and China consider Russia to be the main suspect, three U.S. officials and two others briefed on the investigation tell NBC News.

The suspicion that Russia is likely behind the alleged attacks is backed up by evidence from communications intercepts, known in the spy world as signals intelligence, amassed during a lengthy and ongoing investigation involving the FBI, the CIA and other U.S. agencies. The officials declined to elaborate on the nature of the intelligence.

 The evidence is not yet conclusive enough, however, for the U.S. to formally assign blame to Moscow for incidents that started in late 2016 and have continued in 2018, causing a major rupture in U.S.-Cuba relations.

Since last year, the U.S. military has been working to reverse-engineer the weapon or weapons used to harm the diplomats, according to Trump administration officials, congressional aides and others briefed on the investigation, including by testing various devices on animals. As part of that effort, the U.S. has turned to the Air Force and its directed energy research program at Kirtland Air Force Base in New Mexico, where the military has giant lasers and advanced laboratories to test high-power electromagnetic weapons, including microwaves. Read more

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US officials suspect Russia in mystery ‘attacks’ on diplomats in Cuba, China

US officials suspect Russia in mystery ‘attacks’ on diplomats in Cuba, China

US officials suspect Russia in mystery ‘attacks’ on diplomats in Cuba, China

US officials suspect Russia in mystery ‘attacks’ on diplomats in Cuba, China

US officials suspect Russia in mystery ‘attacks’ on diplomats in Cuba, China

US officials suspect Russia in mystery ‘attacks’ on diplomats in Cuba, China