Pakistan's army says security forces backed by helicopter gunships have attacked pro-Taleban militant hideouts in the tribal region of North Waziristan.

A Pakistani army official says the attack, launched Tuesday in the village of Daygan, sparked hours of fighting, in which 10 militants were killed. 

At least three civilians, including two children, were wounded when a stray mortar hit their home.

The army says it ordered the offensive after intelligence indicated militants were hiding in the region.

On Monday, a foreign ministry spokeswoman said Pakistan's tribal zone is not a safe haven for al-Qaeda or the Taleban.

Violence in North Waziristan has risen since pro-Taleban tribal fighters pulled out of a peace deal with the government earlier this month.  Tribal leaders accused officials of violating the agreement by deploying more troops to the region and launching attacks.

Also Monday, tribal elders in North Waziristan said they would boycott a peace assembly designed to unite local leaders to combat Taleban militants.

They say they will not participate in this week's tribal council in the Afghan capital, Kabul, unless Pakistani security forces withdraw from checkpoints in the region.

Some information for this report was provided by Reuters.