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Stevie Nicks Apologizes for Saying Mariah Carey Should Strangle Nicki Minaj

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Mariah Carey, Stevie Nicks, Nicki Minaj 

Stevie Nicks is so very sorry.

Two days after the Fleetwood Mac songstress told The Daily she would have resorted to violence had she been on the receiving end of new American Idol judge Nicki Minaj's hurtful taunts aimed at Mariah Carey, Nicks has issued an apology.

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"I want to apologize for my remarks about Nicki Minaj's behavior toward Mariah Carey, which I said during a long and exhausting day of interviews," Nicks said in a statement. "It was very out of character for me and I deeply regret what I said."

Promoting her documentary "In Your Dreams" during an interview with The Daily, Nicks, 64, discussed the taped altercation — released online October 2 — in which Minaj, 29, went on an expletive-laden tirade about her distaste for fellow newbie judge Carey, 42. (The two women sit on the panel with season 12's other critics, Randy Jackson and Keith Urban.)

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"How dare this little girl. . . . If I had been Mariah, I would have walked over to Nicki and strangled her to death right there," fumed Nicks, who served as a guest mentor during Idol's 11th season. "I would have killed her in front of all those people and had to go to jail for it."

Arguing that she "spoke without thinking," Nicks said she felt especially protective over Carey, "who has gone through many difficulties in her life."

While Idol producers reason that the taped spat between Minaj and Carey, filmed during Idol's Baton Rouge, La., auditions, is not indicative of the judges' overall rapport, a source tells Us Weekly the divas' bad blood is no stunt.

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"Mariah is genuinely afraid," the insider explains of Carey, who was forced to hire extra security when Minaj is said to have later threatened to pull a gun on her — a claim the "Starships" singer denies. "She is disgusted with Nicki's behavior."

For much more on the nasty feud between Carey and Minaj — and how Idol execs feel like they've "struck gold" with the drama — pick up the new issue of Us Weekly, out Friday!

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