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Suicide bomber targets Iraq police academy

Police say a suicide bomber has killed 16 people and wounded 26 in a crowd of police recruits who were leaving their academy in eastern Baghdad.

It is the latest strike on Iraqi security officials who are often targeted by insurgents seeking to underscore how vulnerable the country remains.

Iraqi police said the bomber detonated his car Sunday outside the fortified national Police Academy compound when the crowd of recruits came out and began walking down the street.

Officials at three nearby hospitals confirmed the casualties, although there were conflicting reports about the exact death toll.

"I can see body parts scattered on the ground and boots and berets covered with blood. Many cars were set ablaze," a policeman working at the academy told Reuters.

The Associated Press and Reuters contributed to this report