Trudeau appeared in brownface and turban at Arabian Nights gala in 2001: Time

Liberal Leader Justin Trudeau attended an Arabian Nights gala dressed in brownface makeup and a turban 18 years ago, according to a report by Time Magazine. 

The article details how the picture of Trudeau appears in the 2000-01 yearbook of the West Point Grey Academy, a private school in Vancouver, where he worked as a teacher. 

Trudeau is expected to address the media soon. is carrying his statement live.

Time Magazine said Vancouver businessman Michael Adamson, who was a part of the West Point Grey Academy community, brought the photograph to the magazine’s attention because he said he thought it should be made public. 

“I can confirm it is him,” said Liberal spokesman Cameron Ahmed in an email to CBC News. “It was a photo taken in 2001 while he was teaching in Vancouver, at the school’s annual dinner, which had a costume theme of Arabian Nights.

“He attended with friends and colleagues dressed as a character from Aladdin.”

Liberal Leader Justin Trudeau is shown in this 2001 photo published in the yearbook of West Point Grey Academy, a private school where Trudeau was teaching at the time. (

NDP Leader Jagmeet Singh said Trudeau’s behaviour was “troubling” and “insulting” 

“It’s making a mockery of someone for what they live and what their lived experiences are,” Singh said. “I think he needs to answer for it. I think he needs to answer the question why he did that and what does that say about what he thinks about people who, because of who they are, because of the colour of their skin, face challenges and barriers and obstacles in their life.”

NDP Leader Jagmeet Singh responds to Time Magazine’s article of Liberal Leader Justin Trudeau appearing in brownface and turban at a gala in 2001. 2:28

“Racism is real. People in this room have felt it, have heard this story. I’ve experienced it in my life. he’s got to answer those questions.”

More to come…

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