President Donald Trump’s ambassador to the Netherlands clashed with journalists at a press conference on his first official day in the job after he was quizzed over comments he had made about the "Islamic movement" creating "chaos" in Europe.
In 2015 Pete Hoekstra said there were "no-go" zones in the Netherlands and extremists were burning cars and politicians.
Mr Hoekstra is a former Republican congressman from Michigan who was born in the Netherlands.
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At the press conference one journalist asked him: "Can you mention any example of a Dutch politician who was burned in recent years?"
He did not answer and another journalist said: "This is the Netherlands, you have to answer questions."
Mr Hoekstra said he regretted the comments and wanted to "move on" after the controversy.
He said: "It is not about my personal views anymore. This is about the views and the policies of the United States of America as directed by this administration."
His full statement in 2015 was: "Chaos in the Netherlands. There are cars being burned. There are politicians that are being burned…and yes, there are no-go zones in the Netherlands."
In December he denied making it and said reporting of it was "fake news" but the statement was on video and available on the internet.
The US State Department has previously refused to make comment on the 2015 statement by Mr Hoekstra.
Mr Hoekstra said he would work to build on existing strong links between the Netherlands and the United States.
Dutch-US political and military ties go back four centuries and American officials rarely face hostility from Dutch media.
President Donald Trump nominated Hoekstra as ambassador to The Hague last July and the Senate confirmed the posting in November