Gunmen kill Pakistan government allies

Militants armed with guns and rockets killed two members of a Pakistani pro-government militia and wounded two policemen in a tribal district on the Afghanistan border, officials said Friday.

The militant attack in the northwestern district of Bajaur came just days after US officials said they hoped to open peace talks with the Afghan Taliban in Doha, capital of the Gulf state of Qatar.

About a dozen insurgents attacked the homes of two tribal elders near Khar, the main town in Bajaur, late Thursday, administration official Abdul Haseeb said.

The two elders, who were members of a pro-government tribal militia, were killed and two tribal policemen were wounded, Haseeb told AFP.

A security official in the area confirmed the attack and the casualties. "Their targets were the tribal elders," he said.

Pakistan has for years been fighting homegrown Taliban insurgents in its northwestern border areas with Afghanistan.

A US-led NATO combat mission across the border is due to withdraw next year after a 12-year Afghan Taliban insurgency.