More than 50 people were killed in Iraq on Tuesday when a suicide bomber blew himself up among dozens of army recruits who had gathered near a military headquarters in downtown Baghdad, officials said AP reported.
The officials said at least 51 people were killed and 119 wounded in the massive blast which took place just outside the former Ministry of Defence building that now houses the army's 11th division headquarters.
The recruits were gathered in an open area next to Maidan Square in central Baghdad as they waited to be let through the main gates in small groups, according to two Iraqi police officials who spoke on condition of anonymity.
At least three soldiers were among the dead and eight among the wounded, the police officials said Officials at four Baghdad hospitals confirmed the casualties.
The officials spoke on condition of anonymity because they were not authorised to talk to the media.
The military headquarters receives about 250 new recruits each week as Iraqi security forces try to bolster their ranks to prepare for the US military's looming withdrawal after seven years of war.