Black Lives Matter activists battle Confederate flag protesters

Black Lives Matter activists have battled with Confederate flag-wielding protesters in the US city of Charleston.

A member of the former was arrested after trying to take a flag from one of the latter, his failed attempt caught on camera.

On Thursday (local time) civil rights activist Bree Newsome spoke to an audience about her experiences with racism in a lecture titled 'Tearing Hatred from the Sky'.

She was involved in tearing down the Confederate flag from outside the South Carolina Statehouse following Dylann Roof's massacre of black churchgoers at Emanuel AME Church.

Following the attack, state lawmakers agreed to remove the flag from outside the capitol building - however Ms Newsome didn't think they were moving fast enough, and took things into her own hands.

"Being a child of the South myself and descended from a family that had been in the Carolinas for hundreds of years, the meaning of the Confederate flag was never lost on me," she told the audience.

"South Carolina was the first state to secede from the Union, saying that, quote: 'We of the South contend that slavery is right.'"

However, her presence was opposed by a handful of demonstrators from the Secessionist Party, who flew dozens of Confederate flags over public parking garages.

"I do understand why people feel the way they do. They've been told to feel that way," James Bessenger, chairman of the Secessionist Party, told WCSC.

"To me, that flag has nothing to do with race."

They were then challenged by counter-demonstrators.

"I'm a great-grandson of a Confederate veteran," Paul Garbarini, a member of the group Standing Up for Racial Justice who took part in the counter-protest, told WCSC.

"It represents white supremacy and I have to fight that."

Black Lives Matter organiser Muhiyidin d'Baha was arrested and charged with disorderly conduct after jumping across police tape to snatch the Confederate flag from a Secessionist demonstrator.