Former U.S. Secretary of State Henry Kissinger has expressed regret for making negative remarks about Indian Prime Minister Indira Gandhi and her country in 1971.
In a private conversation with then-President Richard Nixon, Mr. Kissinger called Mrs. Gandhi a "bitch" and described Indians as "bastards."
But Mr. Kissinger told New Delhi Television he has "extremely high regard" for Mrs. Gandhi as a statesman, adding that she was a "great leader who did great things for her country."
He said his comments were made in the context of Cold War politics. India at the time was considered pro-Soviet Union.
Mr. Kissinger's remarks became public this week in newly released transcripts of White House tapes and declassified documents. Mr. Kissinger, the national security adviser in 1971, made the remarks in a meeting with President Nixon at which they discussed Mrs. Gandhi's talks at the White House a day earlier.