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Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau — considered by many a feminist heartthrob — assured reporters yet again that he’s not the groping type.
Speaking to press Friday, Trudeau doubled down on his claim that he didn’t think he did anything wrong when a woman accused him of touching her inappropriately at a music festival 20 years ago; she was 18 at the time, he was 28.
The allegation stems from a newspaper editorial from 2000, recently unearthed, which accused Trudeau of “groping” and “mishandling” an unnamed reporter.
“[Sexual misconduct] is an issue that I have been deeply engaged with not just as a leader but all my life, since my early 20s in university, [where I was] active on issues around sexual assault,” Trudeau explained. “I’ve been reflecting very carefully on what I remember from that incident almost 20 years ago and again I feel, I am confident that I did not act inappropriately.”
He went on to say, however, that part of the “awakening we’re having as a society” is the realization that even if one person doesn’t believe they behaved poorly, the other may feel violated by their actions.
“The same interactions could be experienced very differently from one person to the next,” he added. “I am not going to speak for the woman in question; I would never presume to speak for her.”
“Like I said, I do not feel that I acted inappropriately in any way, but I respect the fact that someone else might have experienced that differently, and this is part of the reflections that we have to go through,” he concluded.
Nevertheless – as is often done in these “he said, she said” situations, Trudeau has privately apologized to the woman he offended.
Watch above, via Global News.
[image via screengrab]