. western-backed rebels in syria are urging the u.s. and britain to restore the flow of non- lethal aid. it was cut this week when islamist factions captured storage warehouses. but defense secretary chuck hagel promised today the u.s. will not leave the moderate opposition in the lurch. we'll explore the plight of pro- western rebels right after the news summary. the u.s. today blacklisted more than a dozen companies and individuals and froze their assets, for evading sanctions against iran. the crackdown came as the obama administration tries to show it is keeping pressure on iran even as it eases some sanctions as part of a nuclear deal. the treasury department's sanctions chief, david cohen, took that message to a senate hearing. >> we know there may be some who believe now might be a good time to test our resolve. i want to be clear. we are watching closely. and we are prepared to take action against anyone anywhere who violates or attempts to violate our sanctions. >> woodruff: the administration has also urged congress to hold off imposing any new sanctions on iran, for now.
. >> ifill: and i'm gwen ifill. also ahead, how islamist fighters in syria are taking the lead, but also splintering the fight to topple the assad regime. >> woodruff: and, rock legend carlos santana, on a life of music and inspiration. >> real musicians remind the listener of a forgotten song inside them and when you hear that forgotten song you know you get chills, you get tears, you dance and didn't even know why. >> woodruff: those are just some of the stories we're covering on tonight's "pbs newshour." >> major funding for the pbs newshour has been provided by: >> and by the alfred p. sloan foundation. supporting science, technology, and improved economic performance and financial literacy in the 21st century. >> and with the ongoing support of these institutions and foundations. and... >> this program was made possible by the corporation for public broadcasting. and by contributions to your pbs station from viewers like you. thank you. >> ifill: the deal creating the world's largest airline became official today. american airlines emerged from bankruptcy to join with u.s. airways.
of the story after the news summary. in syria today, soldiers surrounded an industrial area near damascus to fend off attacks from an al-qaeda-linked rebel group. the action took place in adra-- northeast of the capital. rebels reportedly killed workers and their families who live there and largely support president assad. ukraine's embattled president held talks today with opposition leaders in an effort to resolve a three-week-long political crisis. it stemmed from viktor yanukovych's decision to scrap a trade deal with the european union. during today's meeting, yanukovych said he'll sign it, and also offered amnesty to protesters facing criminal charges. but the opposition said those promises still fall short. french troops battled rebel fighters in the central african republic's capital today. some 1,600 french peacekeepers are working to disarm the rebels and restore calm to bangui. violence between christians and muslims has left more than 500 people dead in the past week. about 160,000 others were forced to leave their homes. >> ( translated ): there's a lot of shooting h
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