updated 8/27/2008 3:44:15 AM ET 2008-08-27T07:44:15

Three students have died in a shootout between rival groups on a university campus in Pakistan, police said on Wednesday.

Maj. Mohammed Ali said a dispute escalated into a battle involving automatic weapons and pistols on the site in Karachi in southern Sindh province

Three students were killed and five more were wounded.

According to local news reports, the clash was between the student wings of Pakistan's largest Islamist party and a rival secular group that controls the city government.

Tension between the two parties, which draw support from different ethnic groups, has repeatedly boiled over into deadly violence.

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