Former NBA star Dennis Rodman said he's sorry for his comments implying North Korea had just cause to imprison American missionary Kenneth Bae.
Bae is a Christian tour guide serving a 15-year sentence for allegedly trying to overthrow the government.
In an interview Tuesday with CNN, Rodman became irate when asked if he planned to talk with dictator Kim Jong Un about Bae.
"I'm not trying to save the world," the former NBA player said. "I'm not trying to save Kenenth Bae, all these people. That's not my job."
"We were shocked and outraged," Bae's sister, Terri Chung said of Rodman's remarks. "We could not believe he was saying these things. He was in a position to help; he didn't want to."
On Thursday, Rodman apologized for his outburst, saying he'd been drinking and under a lot of stress when he made the comments in a CNN interview.
"I embarrassed a lot of people," he said. "I'm very sorry. At this point I should know better than to make political statements. I'm truly sorry."
Rodman is in North Korea with a team of former NBA players to play an exhibition match in honor of Un's birthday. He also sang Happy Birthday to the dictator, who he calls his "good friend."
Meanwhile, the State Department said the United States remains very committed to securing Bae's release.