BAE Systems (BAESY) and other defense stocks gained on Friday morning after President Donald Trump's strike on Syria prompted investors to consider the possibility of greater Western involvement in the Syrian conflict.

The stock featured among the top three risers in London shortly after the opening bell, rising more than 1.5% to change hands at 646.0 pence, before paring gains.

Additionally, Meggitt (MEGGF) , Chemring (CMGMF) , Cobham (CBHMF) and Rolls Royce (RYCEY) all posted gains, on a morning that saw European markets largely flat. 

Meanwhile the Stoxx Europe 600 TMI Aerospace & Defense Index rose by 0.17% shortly after the opening bell.

Friday's price action came after President Donald Trump ordered an attack on a Syrian airbase after an alleged chemical weapons attack by Syrian forces. Close to 60 cruise missiles were fired at the target, damaging the airbase and killing several soldiers and civilians.   

BAE Systems, an F-35 partner of Lockheed Martin (LMT - Get Report) , counts its largest customer as the U.S government, although it is a key supplier to both American and British defense departments.

Defense stocks have risen sharply in Europe during the last six months after the election of President Donald Trump prompted investors to begin pricing in greater defense spending in America.

Trump's frequent criticism of insufficient defense spending on the European continent, which has received considerable U.S. military protection in post-war times, has also helped to build expectations of higher defense spending in Europe.

Out of the 15 analysts recorded by Factset (FDS - Get Report) as covering BAE Systems, nine of them currently rate it as a buy while only two have advocated selling the stock.