Outgoing Foreign Minister Avigdor Liberman on Sunday issued an apology for calling rival politicians "Polish (women)" and "blabbermouths."
The remarks had been aimed at Meretz head Zehava Gal-On, Labor head Shelly Yacimovich and Hatnua head Tzipi Livni.
In a post on his Facebook account, Liberman said: "As a person who highly values the Polish community in Israel and its large contribution over the years to the state, and as a person who in the last elections headed a party in which a third of the candidates were women - many of whom occupied senior posts - I didn't think that a small joke would end up being such a big deal. So now I seriously, with no humor about it, I apologize sincerely to anyone who was offended by the joke."
He added: "And now I will sit alone in the dark and think more about what I did."