French aircraft have destroyed a training camp in the eastern Syrian city of Deir el Ezzor.
President Francois Hollande, who spoke briefly with reporters at the United Nations, said the camp was a threat to French security and was destroyed without causing any civilian casualties.
Prime Minister Manuel Valls on Sunday said that the air strikes are self-defence on France’s part.
France was ready to join air strikes on Assad’s forces in Syria in 2013 before U.S. President Barack Obama backed off the plan.
France is acting “coherently, autonomously, focused on our objectives – but in close contact, of course, with our allies”, he added.
It’s the first time France has launched strikes against the terrorist group in Syria, extending the range of previous military action in neighbouring Iraq.
He said: “More than ever the urgency is putting in place a political transition”.
On Saturday night, French planes hit IS targets during a reconnaissance mission.
Russian Federation appeared to seize the initiative in global efforts to end the conflict in Syria on Sunday as Washington scrambled to devise a new strategy for the war-ravaged country and France sent warplanes to bomb Islamic State targets. In the video, they announced the killing was retaliation for France’s airstrikes against ISIS in Iraq.
Recent attacks by Islamic State militants on European soil-including an August assault aboard a high-speed train bound for Paris-have forced France to rethink its approach.
The president’s office argued Sunday that it was a question of national defense, as France has been attacked and threatened by extremists claiming ties to IS.
The goal of the strikes is to “slow, break, stop if possible the penetration of Daesh”, Gen. Vincent Desportes said on the iTele TV station, using the Arabic acronym for IS.
Mr Hollande, heading to the UN General Assembly, also stressed the importance of seeking a political solution for Syria.
On Sunday, Mr. Hollande’s office reiterated its call for Mr. Assad to hand power to a transitional government comprised of Syria’s “moderate opposition” as well as officials from his regime.
Hollande announced on September 7 France’s intention to start airstrikes, days after the photo of a dead 3-year-old Syrian boy galvanized public concern about Syrian refugees fleeing to save their lives.
“Civil populations must be protected against all forms of violence, those coming from Daesh and other terrorist groups, but also against the deadly bombings of (Syrian) President Bashar al-Assad” the statement said.