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Politics

Trudeau says video of him in blackface shot during ‘costume day’ for river guides

WATCH ABOVE: Trudeau explains context for blackface video obtained by Global News

It was during a “costume day” for instructors of a whitewater rafting operation in Quebec that a young Justin Trudeau was filmed in blackface.

The Liberal leader clarified the location of the damning video on Friday, a day after it was published exclusively by Global News.

READ MORE: Video shows Trudeau in blackface in 3rd instance of racist makeup

“It was a costume day for river guides on the whitewater rafting operation that I worked at in the summer between ‘92 and ’94, roughly,” he said during a campaign stop in Toronto.

That would make him between 21 and 23 years old at the time the video was shot.

Trudeau’s re-election campaign became tangled in controversy this week after images and videos of him wearing blackface and brownface came to light.

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In the short video, Trudeau’s face, arms and legs appear to be covered in dark makeup. It shows him raising his hands in the air while laughing, sticking his tongue out and making faces.

WATCH: ‘I never should have done it,’ Trudeau says of blackface video

‘I never should have done it’: Trudeau apologizes again after blackface video emerges
‘I never should have done it’: Trudeau apologizes again after blackface video emerges

Two photographs, released mere hours before the video, show Trudeau in similar racist dress.

The first was released by Time magazine and shows Trudeau in 2001 at an “Arabian Nights”-themed event held by the Vancouver private school where he worked as a teacher.

The second shows Trudeau performing at a high school talent show in Montreal with his face blackened. He is also wearing an afro-style wig.

The Liberal campaign has since confirmed it was Trudeau in the video and images.

READ MORE: Racism can become a political flashpoint — advocates say it needs to be a conversation

Trudeau told reporters Friday that he didn’t totally remember the events of the video.

“That’s why I’m wary about being definitive,” he said when probed again about whether there are other untold incidents.

He went on to reiterate his apology.

“I didn’t realize at the time how much this hurt minority Canadians, racialized Canadians and for that, I am deeply sorry,” he said.

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“I hurt people who consider me and have considered me to be an ally. I will continue to fight against racism and discrimination with everything I do as a leader.”

WATCH: Trudeau addresses blackface controversy at Saskatoon town hall

Justin Trudeau addresses blackface controversy at Saskatoon town hall
Justin Trudeau addresses blackface controversy at Saskatoon town hall

Earlier, in New Brunswick, Conservative Leader Andrew Scheer repeated his belief that Trudeau’s apology is insincere.

“I believe Canadians would have been able to accept his apology had he been open and transparent the first time, if he hadn’t lied when he was first given the opportunity to address it,” he said.

“Again, I think people are very concerned about the hypocrisy.”

WATCH: Justin Trudeau seen in blackface in Global News exclusive video

Justin Trudeau seen in blackface in Global News exclusive video
Justin Trudeau seen in blackface in Global News exclusive video

Global News obtained the video of Trudeau from a source within the Conservative Party of Canada. It was independently verified to be true by Liberal party officials before it was published.

Scheer said Friday that he is not aware of any further controversial photos of Trudeau.

NDP Leader Jagmeet Singh and Green Leader Elizabeth May have also criticized Trudeau for his actions.

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“I have to really point out what we’re seeing now is an ongoing pattern of behaviour that’s really going to hurt Canadians,” Singh said on Thursday. “They’re going to see the prime minister mocking the realities that so many Canadians live with. And it is not a joke.”

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