Mexico is looking into taking legal action against the United States over the murder of eight Mexican citizens in a mass shooting in El Paso, Texas, on Saturday.
Foreign Affairs Secretary Marcelo Ebrard told a press conference Sunday that Mexico is considering the mass shooting an act of terrorism against the Mexican-American community and against Mexicans in the United States, and that the attorney general is exploring legal action that would rule the shooting as such.
Designating the attack as an act of anti-Mexican terrorism would give Mexico access to all the evidence that comes out of the investigation into Saturday’s shooting. Ebrard said that such a designation would be the first of its kind.
“There will be legal action against whoever ends up being responsible for the sale of the assault weapons to the person responsible, and whoever pulled the trigger,” said Ebrard. “We are going to request access to the investigation to find out how the weapon was sold and how it got into his hands.”
A total of 22 people were killed in the shooting, which took place at a Walmart in the Cielo Vista shopping center in El Paso. The shooter has been identified as 21-year-old Patrick Crusius, of Allen, Texas.
Authorities say Crusius is the author of a 2,300-word “manifesto” posted to the message board 8chan before the attack, which speaks of an “invasion” of Mexican and Latino immigrants into the United States.
Ebrard added that Mexico will send a diplomatic note to the United States asking it to “take a clear position against hate crimes,” and that Mexico will consider requesting that Crusius be extradited to Mexico to face charges for the murders of Mexican citizens.
“Mexico considers this individual to be a terrorist,” he said.
Ebrard was scheduled to travel to El Paso on Monday where he was to meet with Mexican consuls from around the United States.