TORONTO, CANADA — According to media reports this week, several Canadian diplomats that suffered mysterious illnesses due to the purported sonic attacks while serving in Havana, Cuba, are suing their government for ignoring or attempting to cover up information about their symptoms, as well as waiting too long to remove them from the country.
In the lawsuit, a total of 14 individuals, made up of five diplomats and their families, allege that the Canadian government knowingly exposed them to “extremely serious and debilitating attacks” which have resulted in brain injuries, among other serious issues.
The group is seeking $28 million in damages (approximately $21 million USD).
Suit: ‘Government Botched Handling of Crisis’
According to the allegations made by the group in the suit, Canada severely mishandled the crisis when it was soon realized that American diplomats were not the only target of the mysterious sonic attacks.
“Canada downplayed the seriousness of the situation, hoarded and concealed critical health and safety information, and gave false, misleading and incomplete information to diplomatic staff”
In addition to poor handling of the crisis, the lawsuit also claims that the government knowingly sent additional citizens “in harm’s way” by sending new families to Havana while personnel were presenting with symptoms similar to those of American diplomats.
While the US withdrew much of its non-essential staff from Cuba in the fall of 2017, Canada did not follow suit until April 2018.
“When the U.S. was withdrawing its diplomats Canada knew there was a problem and we didn’t pull our people out,” John Phillips, an attorney representing the group in the suit, told CBC.
All of the suit’s 14 of the defendants suffer from what is being called “Havana Syndrome”. The symptoms are said to be consistent with traumatic brain injuries, including headaches, loss of memory, dizziness, nausea and vomiting.
Three of the individuals in the suit required hearing aids after experiencing moderate to severe hearing loss as a result of the attack, and others reportedly experienced tinnitus and pressure in their ears.
Canadian Prime Minister, Justin Trudeau stated on Thursday that his government has taken the situation in Cuba “very seriously.” He also stated that there the health impacts on diplomats in Cuba “have been visible and real”.
While it’s still unclear who was behind the attacks, or what the real source behind the attacks was, many theories have been proposed to date.
**HHTM will continue to follow this developing story. Interested readers can review the following articles for background and opinion related to the mysterious Cuban sonic attacks: