DUBAI, United Arab Emirates (AP) — Bahrain says it arrested two men and is searching a third in connection to a June highway bombing that killed a woman and wounded three of her children, an attack in which it implicated Iran, which on Wednesday denied any involvement.
An Interior Ministry statement late Tuesday says the two detained men — 35-year-old Hassan Jassim Hassan al-Haiki and 26-year-old Hussain Ibrahim Ali Hussain Marzooq — received military training from Iran. It said al-Haiki was taught "in making and using weapons and explosives from the Iranian Revolutionary Guard," the country's paramilitary force.
It said the third suspect, 27-year-old Hussain Ahmed Abdullah Ahmed Hussain, also received military training from Iran and had fled to the Islamic Republic.
The statement didn't elaborate, though Sunni-ruled Bahrain often accuses Iran of fomenting unrest on the Shiite-majority island, which is home to the U.S. Navy's 5th Fleet.
Bahraini officials did not respond to a request for comment Wednesday. In Iran, Foreign Ministry spokesman Bahram Qassemi dismissed the accusations of Iranian involvement as part of a "false, baseless and worn-out method."
The announcement comes as Bahrain wages a crackdown on dissent on a level unseen since the aftermath of its 2011 Arab Spring protests. Bahrain has arrested activists and blocked them from leaving the country, and it has suspended the island's main Shiite opposition group.