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    China Has Had a Spy Base in Cuba for Decades, Former Intelligence Officer Says

    China Has Had a Spy Base in Cuba for Decades, Former Intelligence Officer Says

    China's espionage efforts in Cuba targeting the United States are not recent and date back at least three decades, a retired counterintelligence agent has told the Herald.

    It took U.S. intelligence agencies nine years to figure out who was behind the repair and enhancements spotted during the 1990s at a “signals intelligence facility” — a reference to the interception of electronic communications — in the town of Bejucal, a 45-minute drive from Havana.

    “We saw the enhancements over a decade, a steady evolution; clearly something was going on, but we didn't know what,” said Chris Simmons, a former chief of a counterintelligence research branch on the Western Hemisphere at the U.S. Defense Intelligence Agency, which had Cuba as its No. 1 target. “And then, in 2001, we discovered that the Chinese had been there already for nine years. We were told at that time that when the Chinese arrived in 1992, they were embedded in a single building within Bejucal, and there were 50 officers in this facility.”

    The revelations of the long-term foothold of Chinese spy agencies in Cuba come after intelligence reported by The Wall Street Journal suggested Cuban and Chinese officials were discussing building a spy base and a training facility on the island and paying billions of dollars to Cuba in exchange. White House and Pentagon officials first said the initial report had “inaccuracies” without further elaboration….

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