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'I share that anger': Trudeau responds to townhall heckler angry over $10.5 million Omar Khadr settlement

THE CANADIAN PRESS

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau listens to a question from protesters during a town hall meeting in Hamilton, Ont., on Wednesday, January 10, 2018. Nathan Denette / THE CANADIAN PRESS

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau listens to a question from protesters during a town hall meeting in Hamilton, Ont., on Wednesday, January 10, 2018. Nathan Denette / THE CANADIAN PRESS

HAMILTON -- Prime Minister Justin Trudeau has told a woman heckling him about Omar Khadr during a townhall in Hamilton that he too is angry about the multi-million-dollar settlement issued to the former Guantanamo Bay inmate.

The Canadian government paid Khadr a reported $10.5 million to settle a lawsuit that alleged the government violated his Charter rights.

Omar Khadr walks back to his home after speaking to the media after being granted bail in Edmonton on Thursday, May 7, 2015. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Nathan Denette

The payment last summer generated a political firestorm that continues today, as a young woman shouted about it when Trudeau attempted to take another person's question at an event at McMaster University.

Watch the full townhall here: (Khadr comments at approx. 51:44)

Trudeau said the anger that a lot of people feel about the payment is real, and that it might surprise people to know he shares that anger and frustration.

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau answers questions from the public during his town hall meeting in Hamilton, Ont., on Wednesday, January 10, 2018. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Nathan Denette

The prime minister said that was money that could have been put toward programs to help people, but it is a "bit of a consolation" that if the government hadn't settled, the lawsuit could have cost between $30 and $40 million.

He told the crowd that he wants everyone to continue to be angry that a Canadian government had to pay that money and to take it as a lesson that no Canadian government should ever think it's OK to allow a Canadian to be tortured.