Officials: US to ask Cuba to cut embassy staff by 60%

Associated Press

WASHINGTON (AP) -- U.S. officials say the Trump administration is preparing to ask Cuba to reduce the staff at its embassy in Washington by 60 percent.

The move follows last week's U.S. decision to reduce American personnel at the embassy in Havana by a similar amount. That move was in response to mysterious health attacks on U.S. government workers in Cuba that have affected their hearing, balance and vision.

The officials say the State Department is expected to announce the decision Tuesday. They say the intention isn't to punish Cuba, but to ensure both countries have a similar number of diplomats in each other's capitals. The Cuban diplomats won't be formally expelled unless Havana refuses to send them home.

The officials weren't authorized to speak publicly about the matter and demanded anonymity.