Russian Fighter Jets’ Flights from Iranian Airbase Not Halted: Speaker Larijani

Iran has not stopped allowing Russian warplanes to fly into Syria from one of its western airbases, Parliament Speaker Ali Larijani said but at the same time reiterated that Tehran has not put any military bases at the disposal of Russia.

Iran is in alliance with Russia in its campaign in Syria and in its battle against terrorism, Larijani said Tuesday.

Russian flights have not been halted, he added, stressing that neither Russia nor any other countries have a permanent military base in the Islamic Republic.

Russians’ flights from the base are a temporary issue and are only for refueling,Larijani went on to add, and noted that the decision did not need the parliament’s permission.

The comments by the Iranian parliament speaker came after the country’s Defense Minister Brigadier General Hossein Dehqan also said the Russian aircraft fly to the Iranian airbase to be either refueled or get reloaded, noting that they use the base for more effective operation against terrorist groups in Syria.

Dehqan further ruled out any plans for permitting Russian jets to use Iranian bases other than Nojeh at the moment, but said they can keep using the airbase as long as necessary.

Syria has been gripped by civil war since March 2011 with various terrorist groups, including Daesh (also known as ISIS or ISIL), currently controlling parts of it.

Meanwhile, Russia’s aerial support for the Syrian forces since September 2015 has given fresh impetus to the fight against the foreign-backed terrorists.

Iran has also remained a close ally of Syria and supports its legitimate government in the face of militancy.