Pakistani security forces backed by helicopter gunships attacked a militant training camp near the Afghan border on Tuesday, killing at least three suspected militants, security officials said.

After receiving reports about the training facility in North Waziristan, tribal elders were sent to the area to tell its organizers to close it down, but came under fire, triggering a gunbattle, said army spokesman Maj. Gen. Waheed Arshad.

"When they opened fire, we had to start an operation," Arshad said. At least three militants had been killed and the gunfight was continuing, he said.