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BEIRUT (AP) — Japan says it's analyzing the latest message that's believed to be from the Islamic State group that's holding a Japanese journalist and a Jordanian pilot hostage. The message, read by a voice claiming to be hostage Kenji Goto, was released online after Jordan offered to swap the pilot for a female terrorist. The new message demands that the Jordanians present the woman at the Turkish border by sunset Thursday, or the pilot would be killed. Terrorist Sajida al-Rishawi was convicted of involvement in deadly hotel bombings in Jordan in 2005.
SEOUL, South Korea (AP) — A U.S. research institute says North Korea may be trying to restart its main nuclear bomb fuel reactor after a five-month shutdown. The reactor restarted in 2013 after being shut down under a 2007 disarmament agreement. But it's been offline since August. Recent satellite imagery shows hot water drainage from a pipe at a turbine building and growing snow-melt on the roofs of the reactor and turbine buildings — possible signs that the reactor is being restarted.
SACRAMENTO, Calif. (AP) — Health officials in California have declared electronic cigarettes a health threat that should be strictly regulated like tobacco products. They've joined other states and health advocates across the U.S. in pushing for tighter controls of e-cigarettes as they become more popular. The California Department of Public Health says e-cigarettes emit cancer-causing chemicals and get users hooked on nicotine. But it also says more research needs to be done to determine its health effects.
LOS ANGELES (AP) — A measles outbreak linked to Disneyland in California has now grown to 95 cases. The California Department of Public Health tells the Los Angeles Times that 79 of those in infections are in California and 52 of them can be linked directly to Disney Parks. Measles has been spreading since an outbreak linked to Southern California's Disney parks last month. Most of those infected were not vaccinated.
NEW YORK (AP) — McDonald's CEO Don Thompson is stepping down. McDonald's has been struggling amid intensifying competition and changing attitudes about food. Customer traffic at established locations in the U.S. fell 4.1 percent last year, following a 1.6 percent decline in 2013. Thompson, who's been CEO for 2 ½ years, retires March 1.
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