'I am sincerely sorry for having hurt, disrespected or accused anyone' - Jesse Hughes apologises for Bataclan comments
Jesse Hughes has apologised for alleging that security at Paris' Bataclan music venue had been pre-warned about the terror attacks in the French capital last year.
The Eagles of Death Metal frontman was on stage with his group on 13 November when gunmen stormed the venue and opened fire, killing 89 people.
The band was able to escape unharmed, but Jesse recently told America's Fox Business Network that he believed the entire incident could have been a set-up from the beginning.
Now Hughes has released a statement apologising for his comments, admitting his claims were "unfounded and baseless". In the statement, released on Friday night, he said: "I humbly beg forgiveness from the people of France, the staff and security of the Bataclan, my fans, family, friends and anyone else hurt or offended by the absurd accusations I made in my Fox Business Channel interview.
"My suggestions that anyone affiliated with the Bataclan played a role in the events of November 13 are unfounded and baseless - and I take full responsibility for them. They do not reflect opinions of my bandmates or anyone associated with Eagles of Death Metal.
"The shame is 100 per cent mine. I’ve been dealing with non-stop nightmares and struggling through therapy to make sense of this tragedy and insanity. I haven’t been myself since November 13. I realise there’s no excuse for my words, but for what it’s worth: I am sincerely sorry for having hurt, disrespected or accused anyone."
Hughes originally made the comments in an interview earlier this week, admitting he started feeling uneasy when the backstage security guard failed to even look at him as the band first arrived at the concert hall.
"I immediately went to the promoter and said, 'Who's that guy? I want to put another dude on,'" Hughes recalled. "And he goes, 'Well, some of the other guards aren't here yet,' and eventually I found out that six or so wouldn't show up at all."
The rocker declined to speculate about why the guards didn't show up "out of respect for the police investigating," but he made his feelings clear by adding, "It seems rather obvious that they had a reason not to show up," suggesting they may have been made aware of the attack in advance.
Bataclan bosses denied Hughes' claims on Friday, and claimed they were false and damaging.
"Jesse Hughes spread some very grave and defamatory accusations against the Bataclan teams," a Bataclan representative said in a statement.
"Hughes' claims are insane... A judicial investigation is undergoing. We wish to let justice proceed serenely. All the testimonies gathered to this day demonstrate the professionalism and courage of the security agents who were on the ground on November 13. Hundreds of people were saved thanks to (these agents') intervention."