China pays billions to build spy base in Cuba

TOPSHOT - Russian Prime Minister Mikhail Mishustin (R) and Chinese Premier Li Qiang attend a welcoming ceremony in Beijing on May 24, 2023. (Photo by THOMAS PETER / POOL / AFP) (Photo by THOMAS PETER/POOL/AFP via Getty Images)
Russian Prime Minister Mikhail Mishustin (R) and Chinese Premier Li Qiang attend a welcoming ceremony in Beijing on May 24, 2023. (Photo by THOMAS PETER/POOL/AFP via Getty Images)

OAN’s Noah Herring
2:53 PM – Thursday, June 8, 2023

China has reached an agreement with Cuba that allows them to build an electronic eavesdropping facility on the island, according to U.S. officials who spoke with The Wall Street Journal. 

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The facility, around 100 miles from Florida, would allow the Chinese to pick up electronic communications throughout the southeastern U.S., where many military bases are located.

Officials said that the facility would allow Beijing to monitor phone calls, emails, and satellite transmissions through espionage monitoring known as “SIGINT,” and they would also be able to track and monitor ship traffic.  

According to officials, China had agreed to pay Cuba, who is struggling for funds, several billion dollars to help the nation build the spy station on their land. 

On Wednesday, John Kirby, spokesman for the National Security Council, said he could not comment on the details of the report, but noted that the U.S. is currently monitoring the situation and taking the necessary steps to counter the Chinese’s effort to gain information and access. 

After the release of the report on Thursday, Kirby suddenly backtracked, stating “This report is not accurate,” without adding any more detail. He then stated, “We remain confident that we are able to meet all our security commitments at home and in the region.” 

These recent reports of a Chinese spy operation comes as the relationship between China and the U.S. has been deteriorating.

“Well, what we’re seeing is an unbelievable aggression by China, ”House Intelligence Committee Chairman Mike Turner said (R- Ohio). “If you look at the balloon that flew over the United States, the Chinese police stations, the aggressiveness against our both planes and ships in international water, it goes right to the heart of what President Xi said when he stood next to Putin in Russia, where he said, they’re trying to make change that had not happened in 100 years.”

Some experts believe that this base is a chance for China to level the playing field as the U.S. has been reportedly growing a military presence in Taiwan.

“Establishing this facility signals a new, escalatory phase in China’s broader defense strategy. It’s a bit of a game changer,” said Craig Singleton, a senior at the Foundation for Defense of Democracies.

The recent findings about the base has caused Republicans to continue criticizing the Biden administration and its dealings with China. 

“Joe Biden needs to wake up to the real Chinese threats on our doorstep,” Nikki Haley, a current Republican presidential candidate, wrote on Twitter.

Senator Marco Rubio (R-Fla.) also took to Twitter, saying, “The threat to America from Cuba isn’t just real, it is far worse than this.”

Both the Chinese and Cuban Embassy declined to comment on the situation. 

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