Formed in 2012, in November of that year The Washington Post described al-Nusra as "the most aggressive and successful" of the rebel forces. In December 2012, the United States Department of State designated it a foreign terrorist organization, and in November 2013, it became the official Syrian branch of al-Qaeda.
In March 2015, the group joined with other jihadist groups to form the Army of Conquest. In July 2016, al-Nusra formally re-branded as Jabhat Fatah al-Sham ("Front for the Conquest of the Levant").
From 2012 to 2013, the al-Nusra Front's full name was the "Victory Front for the People of the Levant by the Mujahideen of the Levant on the Fields of Jihad" (Arabic: جبهة النصرة لأهل الشام من مجاهدي الشام في ساحات الجهاد, transliteration: Jabhat an-Nuṣrah li-ahli ash-Shām min Mujahideen ash-Shām fi Sahat al-Jihad).