Security forces caught the militants in the Shumkari area of the Mohmand tribal district close to the border with Afghanistan trying to “sneak into Pakistan territory,” a military spokesman said in a statement.
“At about 0130 hours (Saturday night) a group of about 10-15 terrorists tried to sneak into Pakistan territory. Pakistan troops observed and surrounded them. Intense exchange of fire took place for about an hour,” the statement says.
A local administration official confirmed the incident and said that the bodies of the militants were later brought to a local hospital for autopsy.
Pakistan has tightened its control on the border and has, since last year, launched several operations in its tribal areas to root out militants.
The military upped its operations after Taliban killed more than 150 people, the majority of them children, in an attack on a school in Peshawar in December.