Elon Musk apologizes for calling Thai cave rescue diver a pedophile

Elon Musk apologizes on Twitter for calling a British diver involved in the Thailand cave rescue a pedophile.

Tesla CEO's tweets follow a drop in company's share price

Tech entrepreneur Elon Musk says he spoke 'in anger' after one of the Thailand rescue divers said his offer of a mini-submarine to assist the cave rescue was a PR stunt. (Joshua Lott/Getty Images)

Elon Musk has apologized for saying a British diver involved in the Thailand cave rescue is a pedophile.

In a pair of tweets late Tuesday, the Tesla CEO said he had "spoken in anger" on Sunday after diver Vern Unsworth accused Musk and SpaceX engineers of orchestrating a "PR stunt" by sending a small submarine to help divers rescue the 12 Thai soccer players and their coach from a flooded cave. 

Musk said that Unsworth's criticism upset him, but he should not have branded him a "pedo." Musk said, "The fault is mine and mine alone."

Musk's Sunday tweet, later deleted, had sent investors away from Tesla stock, which fell nearly three per cent Monday. Unsworth told CNN earlier this week that he is considering legal action. 

"I am aware of his apology, and no further comment," Unsworth told Reuters by phone on Wednesday after Musk's latest tweets.

Musk, chief executive of the electric car maker Tesla Inc., offered a mini-submarine created by his rocket company SpaceX to help extract the youth soccer team and the coach from the labyrinth of partly flooded passages.

However, the rescue team of elite divers and others rejected his proposal, and a war of words erupted when CNN quoted Unsworth as saying the submarine "had absolutely no chance of working" and was "just a PR stunt." 

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Musk responded on Twitter, saying: "We will make one (video) of the mini-sub/pod going all the way to Cave 5 no problem. Sorry pedo guy, you really did ask for it."

The tweet was later deleted.

The boys, aged between 11 and 16, are expected to leave hospital in Chiang Rai on Wednesday and hold a news conference in the evening. 

With files from Reuters