At least 17 Pakistani soldiers have been killed and 22 others wounded after a roadside bomb hit a military convoy in a northwestern tribal area, officials have said.

The attack on Sunday occurred near Dosali village in North Waziristan, said Pakistani intelligence officials, adding that the blast destroyed two vehicles and damaged a third.

The wounded were brought to a military hospital in the nearby town of Miran Shah, the officials said.

The North Waziristan tribal area is a major trouble spot that the military has been reluctant to tackle. The remote region is home to Pakistani Taliban and al-Qaida operatives at war with the government.

No group immediately claimed responsibility for the incident but Taliban fighters frequently attack security force convoys in the area.

Pakistan has refused to conduct military offensive in the region, home to Haqqani network - considered one of the most dangerous groups fighting in Afghanistan – despite Washington’s repeated push to do so.

The military is worried that if it targets its enemies in the region, that could trigger a backlash whereby other fighters in the area turn against the government.

Islamabad says more than 35,000 people have been killed as a result of terrorism in the country since the 9/11 attacks on the US.

Source: Agencies