The Cuban Foreign Ministry Denies There is an Agreement With China To Open an Electronic Espionage Center in Cuba

The Deputy Minister of Foreign Affairs of Cuba, Carlos Fernández de Cossío. (Foreign Ministry of Cuba/Facebook)

14ymedio bigger14ymedio/EFE, Havana, 8 June 2023 — The Cuban Foreign Ministry denied on Thursday the report in the American newspaper The Wall Street Journal that the Government of the Island signed an agreement with China to allow the installation on its territory of a large, secret espionage center.

The Deputy Minister of Foreign Affairs, Carlos Fernández de Cossío, claimed in a statement to the media that this report is “unfounded information,””slander” and “false,” and its purpose is to justify the U.S. sanctions against Cuba and destabilize the Island.

He added that the Cuban government rejects “all military presence” in Latin America and the Caribbean, including the American one in Guantánamo.

According to information from the New York newspaper, the center would allow communications to be intercepted at the regional level. For allowing the installation of this infrastructure, for which no location or more data were provided, Cuba would receive “billions of dollars” as a counterpart.

“Slanders of this type have often been fabricated by U.S. officials, apparently familiar with intelligence information,” Fernández de Cossío said.

The diplomat linked the contents of the article to other reports  published in the past such as the “supposed acoustic attacks against American diplomatic personnel” on the Island, “the non-existent Cuban military presence in Venezuela” and “the imaginary existence of chemical weapons laboratories” in Cuba.

“The hostility of the U.S. against Cuba and the extreme and cruel measures that cause humanitarian damage and punish the Cuban people cannot be justified in any way,” he concluded.

Speaking to the American MSNBC network, John Kirby, spokesman for the White House National Security Council, pointed out that the newspaper’s article is “inexact” but that the U.S. “is focused on making sure that it can mitigate any threat from China in the region.”

“What I can tell you is that we have been concerned since the first day of this Administration about China’s influential activities around the world, even more so in this hemisphere and this region,” Kirby said. “We are observing this very, very closely.”

For his part, the Pentagon spokesman, Brigadier General Patrick Ryder, quoted by Reuters, also said that the information from the U.S. media “is not precise” but that the U.S. is “aware that China and Cuba are developing a new type of espionage station.”

“In terms of that particular report, no, it’s not exact,” he added.

“Beyond that, we are well aware of China’s attempts to invest in infrastructure around the world that may have military purposes,” even in Latin America and the Caribbean, Ryder said. “We will continue to monitor it closely and trust that we can meet all our safety commitments at home and throughout the region.”

Translated by Regina Anavy


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