JUSTIN Trudeau became Canada’s second ever youngest Prime Minister in 2015.
But the Canadian PM has come under fire after an 18 year old photograph of him wearing brownface emerged. Read on to find out about the controversy.
What is the brownface row?
On September 18 a photograph was published by TIME which showed the Canadian PM wearing brownface make-up to an “Arabian Nights” themed party at West Point Grey Academy where he previously taught.
The picture, from 2001, shows Trudeau dressed in a turban and robes with his face, neck and arms completely darkened with make-up.
The controversial snap appears in a yearbook from the school and “has been a subject of gossip within the West Point Grey community”.
Trudeau apologised for the picture, branding it racist.
He said: “Yes it was [racist]. I didn’t consider it racist at the time, but now we know better.”
He also added that he was “p****d off” with himself.
Pressed to come clean about any other past inappropriate costumes, Trudeau also admitted he wore blackface in high school to sing a song by African-American civil rights activist Harry Belafonte.
He said: “I deeply regret that I did that.”
The PM has also been criticised in the past for a tattoo on his left arm, which is based heavily on the work of indigenous artist, Robert Davidson.
Davidson, who is a member of Canada’s indigenous Haida people slammed the PM after he approved a natural gas facility opposed by the Haida, claiming Trudea wasn’t “genuinely sensitive” to Canada’s indigenous population.
Who is Justin Trudeau?
Justin Trudeau, 47, is the leader of Canada’s Liberal Party and the country’s 23rd and current Prime Minister.
Born in Ottawa on Christmas Day in 1971, he became the second youngest Canadian PM when he took office aged 43 in November 2015.
The youngest was Joe Clark, who took office the day before his 40th birthday.
Justin’s father Pierre Trudeau was Clark’s successor as PM and held office between 1968 and 1979 and again from 1980 to 1984 – the third longest serving PM in Canadian history.
Justin’s mother Margaret Sinclair, an actress, author and former TV talk show hostess, separated from Pierre when Justin was five.
He studied for a literature degree before going on to become a teacher of French and mathematics in Vancouver.
He gained a high public profile when he delivered a eulogy at his father Pierre Trudeau’s state funeral in 2000.
While he had always been a supporter of his father’s Liberal Party, he didn’t become fully involved in politics until eight years after his father’s death.
He was elected to represent Papineau in the 2008 federal election and the following year appointed the Liberal Party’s spokesman for youth and and multiculturalism.
In 2010 he became spokesman for citizenship and immigration and in 2011, for secondary education, youth and amateur sport.
He won the leadership of the Liberal party in April 2013 and went on to win a landslide victory in the 2015 federal election.
Trudeau met Prince William and Kate Middleton during the royal visit to Canada in 2016.
Politicians, including German Chancellor Angela Merkel, have been spotted looking charmed at meeting the Canadian PM.
He was named as one of Vogue magazine’s top ten “unconventional alternatives” to the sexiest man alive.
He announced his country would accept refugees after Donald Trump imposed a travel ban.
Trudeau tweeted: “To those fleeing persecution, terror & war, Canadians will welcome you, regardless of your faith. Diversity is our strength #WelcomeToCanada”.
Donald Trump attacked “indignant” Trudeau in a Twitter tirade hours before the G7 summit in June 2018.
It came amid a trade dispute with Canada and EU countries after the US slapped tariffs on steel and aluminium imports.
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Who is Justin Trudeau’s wife?
Justin Trudeau met Sophie Gregoire when they were children growing up in Montreal as she was a classmate and friend of his youngest brother Michel.
But it wasn’t until 2003 that they reconnected, when Sophie – by then a TV personality – was assigned as his co-host for a charity ball.
They began dating several months later before announcing their engagement in October 2004.
The couple married in a Roman Catholic ceremony in May 2005 and have three children together – Xavier, ten, Ella-Grace, nine, and four-year-old Hadrien.