Uruguay issues travel alert for US, warning of deadly hate crimes

Uruguay on Monday issued a warning for its citizens who are traveling to the United States in the aftermath of two deadly mass shootings.

The foreign ministry of the South American nation told its citizens to exercise extreme caution “against growing indiscriminate violence, mostly for hate crimes ... which cost more than 250 people their lives in the first seven months of the year."

Because of “the indiscriminate possession of firearms by the population,” travelers are advised “to avoid areas with large concentrations of people like theme parks, shopping centers, art festivals, religious events, food festivals and any kind of cultural or sporting gathering.”

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The warning comes two days after a gunman opened fire at an El Paso, Texas, Walmart.

Less than 24 hours later, at least nine people were killed and more than two dozen injured in a Dayton, Ohio, shooting. The two shootings are not believed to be linked.

The shooting in El Paso has drawn particular concern from the Hispanic world.

Patrick Wood Crusius, the suspected gunman, drove eight hours from the Dallas-Fort Worth area to El Paso, which sits on the Mexican border and has a high concentration of Hispanic people.

Crusius allegedly wrote a racist, anti-immigrant manifesto before the attack, which described fears of a Latino “invasion."

Mexican officials have described the shooting as "an act of terrorism against the community of Mexico."

The shooting is being investigated as a hate crime.