Pakistani fighter jets and gunship helicopters have bombarded hideouts of Taliban militants in the northwest of the country, killing at least 30 militants.

The early morning attack on hideouts in the north and south Waziristan tribal districts were the fourth in a series of airstrikes by the Pakistan Air Force since last Thursday.

The airforce has been hitting targets in the region since the government's efforts to engage Taliban insurgents in peace negotiations broke down earlier this month.

North Waziristan residents have been fleeing the area on the Afghan border in recent days, anticipating a full-scale military offensive.

They have left their homes, shops and villages behind and settled in safer areas, such as Bannu, a town on the edge of the region.

It has not been possible to verify how many civilians might have been killed or wounded as journalists and independent observers are not allowed to operate freely in the area.