- AFP Photo.

LANDI KOTAL: At least six militants were killed and 12 injured on Friday after Lashkar-i-Islam and its rival Zakhakhel tribal force exchanged gunfire to gain control of a key base in Bazaar Zakhakhel area of Landi Kotal on Friday.

Officials said the dead were six Lashkar-i-Islam fighters, while the wounded included six fighters of the militant outfit and six Zakhakhel force volunteers.

They said Lashkar-i-Islam fighters attacked the Shankhel base of Zakhakhel force near Nari Baba area but the attack was repulsed after prolonged exchange of fire.

Officials said the two groups had many bloody clashes over the last many days for the control of key hilltops in the area.

Also in the day, the head of a peace committee remained safe in a blast targeting him in Sangar Khwar area of Mohmand Agency on Friday.

An explosive device planted near the house of Malik Mohammad Ali Haleemzai went off without causing any damage to the head of the peace committee.

The levies and khasadar personnel cordoned off the area and began an operation to hunt the perpetrators of the blast. However, no arrest could be made until late night.

Mr Haleemzai told Dawn that he and his guards were safe and that he was inside the house when the explosive device went off.

He said he was the apparent target of the blast as he used the passage, where the explosive device was planted, to go to the regional headquarters of Ghalanai in car.

Local political administration registered a case against unidentified miscreants and began investigation.

Meanwhile, a khasadar succumbed to his injuries at Peshawar's Lady Reading Hospital on Friday.

Taj Mohammad, a resident of Gul Bar Shah Korona Ekkaghound, was doing his duty on a bridge near Ekkaghound on the main Peshawar-Bajaur highway when a speeding coach hit him. With critical wounded, he was shifted to the Lady Reading Hospital, where he died.

In a similar incident in Charsadda district's Ibrahimzai area, a government girls' school was blown up by militants early on Friday.

Police and locals said miscreants planted an improvised explosive device inside the building of a government school for girls in Ibrahimzai area near Sradheri and that went off in the small hours of Friday.

They said the blast damaged the school's boundary wall, rooms, furniture and documents.