Middle East

Bahrain arrests fugitives it says were attempting to flee

Bahraini authorities say they have arrested several fugitives who were attempting to flee the country by boat at dawn after they broke out of prison earlier this year.

The Interior Ministry said in a brief statement Thursday that a preliminary investigation suggests they were heading to Iran. It did not provide details or say how many people were arrested.

Police have said that 10 inmates escaped when gunmen armed with automatic rifles and pistols stormed Jaw prison on New Year's Day. One police officer was reported killed and another wounded in the jailbreak.

The jailbreak was a significant escalation in the unrest led by the country's majority Shiites against the Sunni leadership that has for years rocked Bahrain, which hosts the U.S. Navy's 5th Fleet.