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Mass shootings force foreign countries to issue US travel warnings

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This isn’t the first time foreign countries have issued travel warnings because of gun violence in the U.S.
USA TODAY

Foreign countries are issuing warnings to their citizens about traveling to the United States after violence left 31 people dead in two mass shootings this weekend.

The Venezuelan government issued a statement urging its citizens to postpone trips to the U.S. after the “recent acts of violence.”

The news release advises that Venezuelans stay away from cities that have the most violence, citing a 2019 Forbes article that lists the most dangerous cities in the U.S. Those cities were Cleveland; Detroit; Baltimore; St. Louis; Oakland, California; Memphis, Tennessee; Birmingham, Alabama; Atlanta; Stockton, California; and Buffalo, New York.

Also in Latin America, the Uruguayan government issued a similar release that urges its citizens to take precautions when visiting the U.S. because of its “increasing indiscriminate violence” and hate crimes fueled by “racism and discrimination that cost the lives of more than 250 people in the first seven months of this year.”

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The Uruguayan notice specifically advises to avoid places that have a large concentration of people such as theme parks, malls, art festivals, religious activities, food festivals, sports events and mass protests.

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The alerts from the two Latin American countries come after it was discovered that the El Paso shooting suspect, 21-year-old Patrick Crusius, had posted a manifesto to an online message board saying that the massacre was in response to an “invasion” of Hispanics across the southern border.

The Japanese Consul in Detroit published an alert Sunday that said Japanese citizens “should be aware of potential for gunfire” everywhere in the U.S., which they described as a “gun society,” according to the Los Angeles Times.

The Times reported that other countries have issued travel warnings in the past because of gun violence in the U.S. such as France, New Zealand and Germany.

The attacks over the weekend occurred 1,300 miles apart at a packed shopping center in El Paso, Texas, and a popular nightlife complex in Dayton, Ohio. The El Paso and Dayton killings have contributed to 2019 being an especially deadly year for mass killings in the U.S.

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A database by The Associated Press, USA TODAY and Northeastern University shows there have been 23 mass killings so far this year, claiming the lives of 131 people. By comparison, 140 people died in mass killings in all of 2018. The database tracks every mass killing in the country dating back to 2006. 

Contributing: The Associated Press. Follow Adrianna Rodriguez on Twitter: @AdriannaUSAT. 

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