Stephen McNeice
Stephen McNeice

07.09 19 Sep 2019


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Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau has admitted he "should have known better", after a photo surfaced showing him wearing brownface make-up.

Time magazine has published a yearbook photo showing him wearing a turban and robe.

He also had dark makeup on his hands, face and neck at the costume party in 2001.

According to Time, the photo was taken when Mr Trudeau was 29.

He was attending an Arabian Nights-themed gala at a private school where he was a teacher.

The magazine was provided with a copy of the yearbook by a Vancouver businessman.

Following the publication of the photo, Mr Trudeau told reporters: "I take responsibility for my decision to do that.

"I shouldn't have done it, I should have known better.

"It was something that I didn't think was racist at the time, but now I recognise it was something racist to do - and I am deeply sorry."

The photo has emerged with just over a month to go until the Canadian federal election on 21st October.

With campaigning underway, Mr Trudeau has been struggling to move beyond a recent political interference scandal.

A report released by Canada's ethics commissioner last month found Mr Trudeau violated conflict of interest legislation.

The report found he was the only public office holder able to exert influence over the country's attorney general in her decision on whether to intervene in a criminal prosecution.

According to the commissioner, Mr Trudeau directly and through senior officials "used various means to exert influence" over the then attorney general Jody Wilson-Raybould.

Opinion polls in recent weeks have shown Mr Trudeau's Liberal Party and the opposition Conservative Party almost neck and neck ahead of next month's vote.

Main image: Canadian Prime Minister and Liberal Party leader Justin Trudeau reacts as he makes a statement in regards to a photo coming to light of himself from 2001, wearing "brownface". Picture by: Sean Kilpatrick/AP/Press Association Images

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