KHAR (Agencies) - Troops backed by tanks and helicopter gunships killed at least 40 militants linked to Al-Qaeda in Bajaur, a security official said Monday. Forces have for weeks been targeting rebel positions in Bajaur, in a major operation that has seen nearly 700 people killed, mostly militants, and 260,000 displaced. "At least 40 militants were killed and up to 30 wounded in the shelling that commenced on Sunday afternoon and continued until Monday morning," a security official told AFP. Nearly 200 militants have been killed by government troops in the past four days of the offensive, according to army figures. Tribal regions have been wracked by violence since hundreds of Taliban and Al-Qaeda rebels fled there after the US-led invasion of Afghanistan in late 2001. US and Afghan officials have repeatedly claimed the rugged, mountainous region is used by militants to launch cross-border attacks on international troops based in Afghanistan. Violence linked to Pakistan's role in the "war on terror" has claimed the lives of more than 1,200 people in suicide and bomb attacks across the country in the past year. Meanwhile, Political Agent Kurram Agency Muhammad Azam Khan said Monday that troops of security forces being deployed in trenches vacated by warring tribesmen to bring durable peace to the violence hit agency. "Strict action will be taken against a tribe found guilty of violating laws and ceasefire truce," Azam told reporters in his office. The violent clashes between warring tribesmen in restive Karman and Lower Kurram have been ended and normalcy is gradually returning in these areas, he added. The Agency's top administrator said efforts were underway to bring all the tribesmen on board to find permanent solution to the problems of Kurram Agency, saying that he got the support of tribal elders and maliks in this regard. After successful negotiations with warring tribes, he said security forces personnel have been deployed in most of the vacated trenches while the remaining are being filled in Balaskhel, Sadda, Sangeena, Bagazai, Alizai and other restive areas. Azam Khan said telephone and electricity are being restored in disconnected areas of Kurram Agency. The situation is under the control of law enforcing agency and normalcy is gradually returning to the agency. To a question, he said law and order will be restored at all cost and government writ will be established. He lauded the cooperation of members of peace jirga and elders of warring tribesmen.