Critics accused the prime minister of disrespect after a video surfaced on social media showing the prime minister singing Bohemian Rhapsody by British rock group Queen, the BBC reports.
Queen Elizabeth II was Canada’s head of state, and Trudeau designated September 19 as a day of national mourning in Canada.
The video was taken at the Corinthia, where the Canadian delegation was staying, on the afternoon of Saturday, September 17. Trudeau can be seen wearing a T-shirt in the video.
I actually love a good piano bar. I haven’t been to one since pre-covid, this reminds me I should check out one near me.
PM at the Savoy in London last night singing a little queen… for the queen… pic.twitter.com/yyCxIRAbJl
— Brian Lilley (@brianlilley) September 19, 2022
The video receives criticism from commentators and the public
“Shame doesn’t even begin to cover it,” Globe and Mail columnist Andrew Coyne wrote on Twitter.
“He is the Prime Minister, in a public place, on the eve of the Queen’s funeral. And this is how he behaves?”
Vivian Bercovici, a former Canadian ambassador to Israel, said: “He is the Canadian prime minister representing Canada in a week of mourning for the Queen. Our head of state. This is not about Justin. But he should grow up.” .
“He’s … singing. Of all the shameful things Justin Trudeau has said and done, this doesn’t rank,” said Emmett Macfarlane, an associate professor of political science at the University of Waterloo in Ontario.
Defending these criticisms, a spokesman for the Canadian Prime Minister said: “After dinner on Saturday, (the) Prime Minister joined a small meeting with members of the Canadian delegation, who have gathered to pay their respects in Her Majesty’s life and service, the BBC reported.
“Gregory Charles, a renowned Quebec musician and recipient of the Order of Canada, played the piano in the hotel lobby, prompting some members of the delegation, including the prime minister, to join in.”
The spokesman noted that “the Prime Minister has taken part in a number of activities to pay his respects to the Queen”.