Pakistani forces kill seven militants

ISLAMABAD, Pakistan, (UPI) — Pakistani security forces killed at least seven militants Sunday in an offensive targeting hideouts in the Orakzai tribal region, government officials said.

Dawn News reported the security forces had targeted the suspected hideouts that had been cover to Hakeemullah Mehsud, the slain former commander of Tehrik-i-Taliban Pakistan, or TTP, the Taliban militant umbrella group in Pakistan.

Troops said they destroyed at least three military hideouts.

On Saturday, airstrikes killed at least 10 militants and destroyed three of their hideouts in the federally administered Orakzai Agency, Dawn reported.

Dawn cited reports suggesting that the top leadership of al-Qaida and TTP had shifted to Orakzai from Waziristan and Swat.

Elsewhere in Pakistan Sunday, three people, including two police officers, died in a blast in Quetta, in the southwest part of the country along the border with Afghanistan, police said. A device on a bike exploded as a police vehicle passed it.