Arrest of two black men in Starbucks sparks protests in Philadelphia

The arrest of two black men in a Starbucks café in Philadelphia has sparked protests after footage of the incident went viral.

Police were called to the store on Thursday after the men refused to leave after being denied use of the café’s lavatory by staff because they hadn't bought anything.

Their arrest took place while they waited for a friend.

In the footage, their friend known as Andrew Yaffe asks, “Why they are being arrested?”

A woman can be heard saying "they didn't do anything, I saw the entire thing".

The two men were later released without charge.

The footage has now been viewed more than ten million times leading to demonstrations over the weekend and on Monday, protesters attempted to boycott the café.

Starbucks CEO Kevin Johnson said: "Starbucks stands firmly against discrimination or racial profiling.

"I hope to meet personally with the two men who were arrested to offer a face-to-face apology.

"The basis for the call to the Philadelphia police department was wrong," he said. "Our store manager never intended for these men to be arrested and this should never have escalated as it did."