Gov. Mark Dayton on Tuesday said he apologized to Muslim leaders for a recent shooting of two Muslim men, in an act now being investigated by Minneapolis police as a possible hate crime.

"I expressed my sincere apologies for what appears to be another terrible hate crime committed last week," Dayton told reporters at a Muslim community center in Bloomington. "Just a senseless random act of violence that is so un-Minnesotan and appalling to all good-minded Minnesotans who are the overwhelming majority."

Dayton spoke with Muslim leaders for about an hour Tuesday, the final night of the religious holiday of Ramadan.

"We had a very good discussion about what some of the needs are, especially for the young people, giving them the opportunities to be fully absorbed into the culture of our state," Dayton said.

Dayton's visit comes amid rising anti-Islam sentiment sweeping across the country. Recent FBI data show that while hate crimes are down overall in the United States, attacks against Muslims are up.

A new study from Georgetown University shows an uptick in hate crimes targeting Muslims since the start of the presidential campaign season.

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