Philippe Streiff has apologised to the FIA for comments made against the motorsport governing body in the wake of Jules Bianchi's accident after it announced it would be launching legal action against him.

The former F1 driver, who was confined to a wheelchair following an accident during testing in Brazil in 1989, was quoted as suggesting the FIA only created an investigative panel in the wake of Bianchi's accident at Suzuka in order to absolve it of blame.

The comments drew the ire of the FIA - which were targeted at President Jean Todt and medical chief Gerard Saillant -, with the governing body announcing it would be launching legal proceedings against Streiff for defamation.

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However, Streiff has subsequently apologised for his comments against Todt and Saillant, claiming a 'long interview' led to him making 'insulting' comments.

"I got carried away in front of the camera," he said in a statement. "The interview lasted long and I am aware of making statements that were rude and slanderous against Jean Todt , G?rard Saillant and the FIA, and I sincerely regret it.

"I refute and and retracts these statements, which are unfounded and call to the press to remove them from their media.

"Finally, I asked Jean Todt and G?rard Saillant, who are aware of my health problems, they accept my apology. I am sorry to have made statements that do not correspond to the consideration they deserve."

It isn't known whether the FIA will withdraw its legal action.