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13 Things You Didn't Know About The New Liberal Cabinet

From being in space to being in an Indian prison, these are the experiences of the people who now run the country.

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1. Our new Infrastructure and Communities Minister spent 21 months in an Indian prison.

Jason Franson / The Canadian Press

Amarjeet Sohi was accused of being a Sikh terrorist, despite being an activist against extremism. He was arrested without evidence, beaten, isolated, deprived of sleep, and ultimately never charged.

2. Harjit Singh Sajjan was rejected when he first tried to join the military 26 years ago. Now he's Canada's first Sikh Minister of National Defence.

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Sajjan served three tours in Afghanistan and was awarded the Order of Military Merit.

3. Our Transport Minister has been to space.

OUR NEW MINISTER OF TRANSPORTATION MARC GARNEAU, PICTURED IN HIS FAVOURITE MODE OF TRANSPORTATION: #cdnpoli

Marc Garneau is the first Canadian astronaut to fly in space.

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4. Our Minister of Democratic Institutions came to Canada as a refugee.

Via Twitter: @MaryamMonsef

Maryam Monsef is Canada's first Afghan-born Member of Parliament. She came to Canada as a child with her mother and two sisters after her father disappeared.

6. New Veterans Affairs Minister Kent Hehr was a promising hockey player when, in 1991, he was shot through the neck as part of a random drive-by shooting.

Adrian Wyld / THE CANADIAN PRESS

He survived, became a successful lawyer and then provincial MLA, and is now the first Liberal cabinet minister from Calgary since 1972.

7. The mentor of our new Canadian Heritage minister was separatist champion Lucien Bouchard.

Graham Hughes / The Canadian Press

Bouchard worked at the same law firm as Mélanie Joly and wrote her a recommendation letter to Oxford.

8. Jody Wilson-Raybould, a crown prosecutor and regional chief for the Assembly of First Nations, is Canada's first Aboriginal Justice Minister.

Justin Tang / THE CANADIAN PRESS

Also in 1983 her father told Justin Trudeau's father that she and her sister wanted to be prime minister. Pierre responded "tell them I'll stick around 'til they're ready."

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10. Carla Qualtrough, the new Minister of Sports and Persons with Disabilities is legally blind and a Paralympic Games medalist in swimming.

Justin Tang / THE CANADIAN PRESS

Qualtrough only has 10% of her vision. She won a bronze medal at the 1988 Seoul Paralympic Games.

11. Jason Kenney, the frontrunner to take over as Conservative leader, used to work for new Public Safety Minister Ralph Goodale.

Adrian Wyld / THE CANADIAN PRESS

"He would claim that he's made progress; I would claim that he's fallen off the wagon," Goodale told the Ottawa Citizen.

12. Our new science minister contributed to the Nobel Prize won by Al Gore.

Via Twitter: @KirstyDuncanMP

Some have described new Minister of Science Kirsty Duncan as a Nobel Prize winner. Not quite. But she did contribute to the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, which won the Nobel Prize with Al Gore in 2007.

13. And finally, as a group they speak a lot of languages.

Fun fact: Trudeau's ministers speak English, French, Farsi, Dari, Arabic, Punjabi, Hindi, Urdu, Ukrainian, Polish and Italian, among others

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