Russian bombers began flying missions over Syria from an Iranian airbase on Tuesday, the first time the Islamic republic has allowed a foreign power to conduct military operations from its territory since the 1979 revolution.

Tu-22М3 long range bombers and SU-34 strike fighters flying from Hamadan airbase in Western Iran struck targets near Aleppo, Deir Ezzor and Idlib on Tuesday morning, the Russian ministry of defence said in a statement.

“Flying with full bomb loads from Iran’s Hamadan airbase, the aircraft carried out group attacks on Islamic State and Jabhat al-Nusra positions,” the ministry said. Jabhat al-Nusra is the former name of Jabhat Fatah al-Sham, a powerful rebel jihadist group previously affiliated with al-Qaeda.

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