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QUETTA, Pakistan -- Unknown gunmen have killed a pro-government tribal elder and six members of his family in southwestern Pakistan.

Officials said the incident took place early on October 29 in the Dera Bugti district of Balochistan Province. They said the assailants stormed the family's home and then shot to death the elder, Dhara Khan, along with his wife, son, daughter-in-law, and three grandsons.

The attackers fled after the killings. There was no immediate claim of responsibility.

The province is home to separatists fighting for independence and a greater share of profits from the region's oil, gas, and mineral resources. It has also seen sectarian violence between Pakistan's majority Sunni and Shi'a muslims.

Based on reporting by AFP and AP