Shoppers walk in the parking lot of a Walmart store in Fairfax, Virginia. (Photo: Diaa Bekheet) Walmart says it will stop selling ammunition for handguns and assault-style weapons.
FILE - Shoppers walk in the parking lot of a Walmart store in Fairfax, Va. (Diaa Bekheet/VOA)

NEW YORK - Walmart says it has removed ammunition and firearms from displays at some of its stores in the wake of the death of George Floyd that has set off sometimes violent demonstrations against police brutality and injustice against African Americans.

"As a responsible seller of hunting and sporting firearms, we have temporarily removed firearms and ammunition from the sales floor in some stores out of an abundance of caution," said Walmart in a statement.  

The nation's largest retailer, based in Bentonville, Arkansas, said these items are available for purchase, but are being stored in a secure room. Walmart, which operates 4,700 stores in the U.S., didn't disclose the number of stores affected by the change.  

The company doesn't sell any firearms in many of the major urban markets experiencing looting.  

Walmart Inc., along with other big chains like Target, CVS, and Apple, had temporarily closed or limited hours at some locations for safety reasons or because they had been looted or damaged.  

Last year, Walmart stopped selling handgun and short-barrel rifle ammunition, while requesting that customers not openly carry firearms in its stores, even where state laws allow it. The company also ended the sale of handguns in Alaska, the only state where the discounter sold handguns.