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A student at a military college who sued top Pentagon officials after he was deemed unfit for service because he tested positive for HIV has settled his lawsuit and plans to pursue his dream of becoming an Army officer. Eddie Diaz, a student at Norwich University in Vermont, said Tuesday he just wants an opportunity to serve his country. Diaz said in the lawsuit filed in Vermont in May that after he tested positive he was dropped from the Reserve Officers’ Training Corps and the Vermont Army National Guard despite being healthy and asymptomatic. Messages seeking comment were left with the Pentagon and the Vermont National Guard.

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A group in military fatigues walks in front of Jackman Hall on the campus of Norwich University on July 16, 2018, in Northfield. A student at …

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The Mexican army’s role in the disappearance of 43 college students and its alleged links to organized crime are now at the center of a case that has shaken the nation. The government’s Truth Commission has declared the 2014 episode a “state crime.” Three members of the military and a former federal attorney general have been arrested in the case. Few now believe the government’s initial claim putting all blame on a drug gang and allied local officials for killing the students, then burning their bodies. A recent report indicates collaboration between a drug cartel and an officer and that some of the students’ bodies were taken to a local army base.

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A Kremlin-orchestrated referendum got underway in occupied regions of Ukraine that sought to make them part of Russia, with some officials carrying ballots to apartment blocks accompanied by gun-toting police. Kyiv and the West condemned it as a rigged election whose result was preordained by Moscow. The referendums in the Luhansk, Kherson and partly Russian-occupied Zaporizhzhia and Donetsk regions were widely seen as a prelude to Moscow annexing the regions. The voting overseen by authorities installed by Russia, scheduled to run through Tuesday, is almost certain to go the Kremlin’s way. Meanwhile, the governor of the Kharkiv region said 436 bodies were exhumed from a mass burial site in the eastern city of Izium, 30 with signs of torture.

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Social media users shared a range of false claims this week. Here are the facts: President Joe Biden did not announce that the U.S. is signing a U.N. “Small Arms Treaty,” that would establish an international gun control registry. There is no scientific evidence to suggest humans or other mammals vaccinated with mRNA shots die within five years. A video shows traffic at the Finnish-Russian border last month, not Russians fleeing after Putin announced the partial mobilization of reservists to Ukraine. Florida ranks 48th in the nation in average public school teacher pay, not 9th.

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Officials say a fugitive Malaysian defense contractor nicknamed “Fat Leonard” at the center of a Navy bribery scandal was trying to head to Russia before Venezuelan authorities captured him. Interpol Venezuela Director General Carlos Garate Rondon said in an Instagram post Wednesday that Leonard Glenn Francis would be handed over to Venezuelan officials to start extradition proceedings. U.S. officials say Francis was under home arrest in San Diego when he cut off his GPS ankle bracelet and escaped on Sept. 4, prompting an international manhunt. Francis was awaiting sentencing after pleading guilty in 2015 to bribing Navy officers to help his ship servicing company, then overcharging the military at least $35 million.

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FILE - This photo taken from video provided by the Russian Defense Ministry Press Service on Feb. 19, 2022, shows a Yars intercontinental ballistic missile being launched from an air field during military drills. In Wednesday's address to the nation, Russian President Vladimir Putin signaled his readiness to use nuclear weapons to protect the country's territory _ a blunt warning to Ukraine to stop pressing its offensive into the Moscow-controlled regions, which are set to be absorbed by Russia after hastily-called referendums. (Russian Defense Ministry Press Service via AP, File

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FILE - In this photo taken from video released by Russian Defense Ministry Press Service on Sept. 8, 2022, Russian paratroopers are seen on a mission on the Nikolaev-Krivoy Rog direction in Ukraine. During the summer, when the Kremlin hoped for a quick capture of all of the Donbas region, local officials talked about organizing the votes in September. (Russian Defense Ministry Press Service via AP, File)

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FILE - In this photo taken from video released by Russian Defense Ministry Press Service on Sept. 19, 2022, members of a special forces unit of the Russian army aim their weapons in action at an unspecified location in Ukraine. A day after the referendums were announced, Putin on Wednesday Sept. 21, 2022, ordered a partial mobilization of reservists to bolster his forces in Ukraine. (Russian Defense Ministry Press Service via AP, File)