The Pentagon on Thursday declined to comment on reports that China intends to set up a surveillance base in Cuba off the US coast that could listen to communications in the US southeast.
The Wall Street Journal reported that Beijing and Havana have reached a secret agreement to set up a Chinese electronic listening center in the Caribbean island that will allow it to control communications in the country’s south.
Notably, US Army Southern and Central Command headquarters are located in the eastern United States, as in the state of Florida, and the newspaper quoted unnamed US officials that China would pay Cuba “several billion dollars” to build the facility.
In addition, the US Department of Defense neither confirmed nor denied the report, which came at the height of tensions between Washington and Beijing over US support for the island of Taiwan, which China says it intends to take back by force if necessary.
A Pentagon spokesman, speaking on condition of anonymity, said: “We will not comment on these specific reports.”
He added: “On a broader level, we are fully aware of the attempts by the People’s Republic of China to invest in infrastructure that could have military purposes around the world, including in the Western Hemisphere.”
“We will continue to monitor this closely and we are confident in our ability to meet all of our commitments to keep the home and the region safe,” he added.
It should be noted that news of this Chinese move in Cuba came after a Chinese high-altitude balloon was spotted over the United States earlier this year, flying from west to east of the country over important military installations before being shot down. by an American fighter off the east coast.