North Korea 'attempts to launch missile but fails': USPACOM

A North Korean missile "blew up nearly immediately" on its test launch, hours before US Vice President Mike Pence landed in South Korea for talks on the North's increasingly defiant arms program.

The attempted launch occurred a day after the regime of Kim Jong Un showed off a bevy of new missiles and launchers at its annual military parade.

The US and Britain have ratcheted up pressure on North Korea after its failed missile launch by warning Pyongyang it must end its "belligerent" behaviour.

McMaster cited Trump's recent decision to order missile strikes in Syria after a chemical attack blamed on the Assad government, as a sign that the president "is clearly comfortable making tough decisions". "The alliance between South Korea and the United States is ironclad".

North Korea has conducted five nuclear tests, including two a year ago. "The problem will be taken care of".

"We need to apply pressure on North Korea so they seriously respond to a dialogue" with the worldwide community, he said, urging China and Russian Federation to play more constructive roles on the issue.

The vice president earlier visited a military installation near the DMZ, Camp Bonifas, for a briefing with military leaders at the joint U.S.

North Korea has spent decades trying to develop operational nuclear weapons.

"We had good intelligence before the launch and good intelligence after the launch", the adviser told reporters on condition of anonymity.

The as-yet unidentified missile exploded on launch from a base in Sinpo, a city on the country's east coast, said the US. But at the same time, McMaster said on "This Week" on ABC that "it's time for us to undertake all actions we can, short of a military option, to try to resolve this peacefully".

US Navy attack on a Syrian airfield this month with Tomahawk missiles raised questions about US President Donald Trump's plans for reclusive North Korea, which has conducted several missile and nuclear tests in defiance of United Nations sanctions, regularly threatening to destroy the South and the US.

North Korea fired an unidentified ballistic missile on Sunday morning that exploded nearly immediately after launch, defying warnings from the Trump administration to avoid any further provocations.

After a two-month policy review, officials settled on a policy dubbed "maximum pressure and engagement", USA officials said Friday. Lu said Beijing wants to resume the multi-party negotiations that ended in stalemate in 2009 and suggested that USA plans to deploy a missile defense system in South Korea were damaging its relations with China.

Pence is headed to Asia this weekend, with planned stops in Seoul; Jakarta, Indonesia; Tokyo and Sydney.

China is urging a return to negotiations over North Korea's pursuit of nuclear weapons after Vice President Mike Pence warned that the US has lost its patience with the regime.

Pence's first trip to South Korea carries personal meaning as well.

U.S. Vice President Mike Pence arrives at the border village of Panmunjom in the Demilitarized Zone (DMZ) which has separated the two Koreas since the Korean War, South Korea, Monday, April 17, 2017. Subscriptions start as low as 25¢ per day.

  • Leroy Wright