ANKARA

At least four police officers in the Midwestern U.S. state of Missouri were injured by gunfire early Tuesday during ongoing protests over the death of George Floyd.

“We have had 4 officers struck by gunfire tonight,” the St. Louis Police Department said on Twitter. “All have been transported to an area hospital. All are conscious and breathing. Their injuries are believed to be non-life threatening.”

It added: “Officers are still taking gunfire downtown & we will share more info as it available.”

Police Chief John W. Hayden later told reporters that two of the officers were shot in the leg, one in the foot, and one in the arm, calling the non-life threatening injuries “the blessing of the day.”

Saying the identity of the shooter or shooters is unknown, Hayden said: “I believe some coward randomly shot at the police line.”

“Mr. Floyd’s death is tragic,” he added. “Can we make some sense out of this?”

Floyd, 46, an African American man, died last week in the neighboring state of Minnesota, when a police officer knelt on his neck for nearly nine minutes. His last words, “I can’t breathe,” became the slogan of nationwide protests.

Ongoing protests in St. Louis turned violent and were marred by looting and arson.

Despite curfews in major US cities, demonstrators took to the streets for the seventh day of protests on Monday night.

Copyright 2020 Anadolu Agency. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.