Walmart removes firearms, ammunition from U.S. stores as social unrest flares

FILE PHOTO: The logo of a Walmart Superstore is seen during the outbreak of the coronavirus disease (COVID-19), in Rosemead, California, U.S., June 11, 2020. REUTERS/Mario Anzuoni

NEW YORK (Reuters) – Walmart Inc WMT.N removed firearms and ammunition from U.S. store floors this week to protect customers and employees as tensions across the country rise, the world’s largest retailer said on Thursday.

“We have seen some isolated civil unrest and as we have done on several occasions over the last few years, we have moved our firearms and ammunition off the sales floor as a precaution for the safety of our associates and customers,” a Walmart spokesman said.

The Bentonville, Arkansas-based retailer, which sells firearms in approximately half of its more than 5,000 U.S. stores, will still sell the items upon request, it said.

The move comes less than a week before the U.S. presidential election on Nov. 3.

In June, Walmart pulled firearms and ammunition from some U.S. sales stores amid nationwide protests over the death of an unarmed black man, George Floyd, at the hands of police in late May.

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