U.K.'s Boris Johnson Says Past Insults Made Towards Foreign Leaders 'Taken Out of Context'

The new British foreign secretary's remarks come after he was asked if he plans to apologize for his past rude comments.

Britain's Foreign Secretary Boris Johnson looks up during a press conference with U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry at the Foreign Office in London, Tuesday, July 19, 2016.
Kirsty Wigglesworth/AP

REUTERS – British Foreign Secretary Boris Johnson, asked by a reporter if he was going to apologize to world leaders for past rude comments he has made about some of them, said his words had been taken out of context. 

"We can spend an awfully long time going over lots of stuff that I've written over the last 30 years ... all of which in my view have been taken out of context, but never mind, but some serious issues call us today," the former journalist Johnson told a news conference on Tuesday with U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry. 

Johnson was named foreign secretary less than a week ago, in a surprise appointment by new Prime Minister Theresa May, given the ex-London mayor's frequently undiplomatic comments.