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Militant Attack in Pakistan Kills Three

Officials in Pakistan say pro-Taleban militants have fired rockets and mortar bombs into a northwestern town near the Afghan border, killing a soldier and two women.

The officials Saturday say the mortar bombs hit various parts of a town, including a military post, in the Bajaur tribal region overnight. They say two paramilitary soldiers and six civilians were wounded in the attack.

In a separate incident Saturday, officials say a suicide bomber rammed his car into a military convoy, killing himself and wounding at least one person near the northwestern town of Tank.

Pakistan is struggling to contain a recent upsurge in violence near the Afghan border following the collapse of a peace deal in July between the government and pro-Taleban tribesmen.

On Friday, officials said pro-Taleban militants released at least 25 of nearly 250 Pakistani soldiers held captive near the Afghan border since late August.

Officials said the militants handed over the soldiers to a tribal council of elders (or jirga) near Wana, the main town in the South Waziristan tribal region.

The militants have demanded that Pakistani security forces release detained fighters and pull out of the tribal region in return for freeing more soldiers.

The capture of the troops in late August as they traveled in the region has been an embarrassment for Pakistan's army.

Some information for this report was provided by AFP and Reuters.