Sen. Chris Coons slams Trump's North Korea tweet

South Korea said the US had reaffirmed it would shoulder the cost of deploying the THAAD anti-missile system, days after President Donald Trump said Seoul should pay for the $1-billion battery created to defend against North Korea.

Donald Trump accused North Korea of "disrespect" after it marked his 100th day as USA president by test-firing a new anti-ship ballistic missile - which blew up after reaching a height of 44 miles.

The North Korea missile test came a day after the Trump administration praised China and its President Xi for having prevailed over Pyongyang in not carrying out either a nuclear test or a missile test.

South Korea's Joint Chiefs of Staff said in a statement that the missile flew for several minutes and reached a maximum height of 71 kilometres (44 miles) before it apparently failed.

Trump has threatened North Korea with military action if it continues developing nuclear and ballistic missile programs.

White House officials said Trump was briefed as Air Force One returned to Maryland from Atlanta, where the President earlier addressed a meeting of the National Rifle Association. "Bad!" Trump tweeted shortly after. "If he does a nuclear test, I will not be happy".

Saturday morning's incident was the second failed missile launch this month, the first of which came after a massive military parade created to show off North Korea's strength and resolve.

South Korean officials also said the test likely was a failure.

Trump also called North Korea's leader "a pretty smart cookie" for being able to hold onto power after taking over at a young age. The missile launch comes amid high tensions in the Korean peninsula.

Why does the North Korean threat seem to be rising?

Despite Mr. Trump's heated rhetoric, at the United Nations Friday, Secretary of State Rex Tillerson said the not looking for a fight.

China's Foreign Minister Wang Yi says it's unrealistic to ask his country to make all the concessions.

"The threat of a North Korean nuclear attack on Seoul or Tokyo is real, and it is likely only a matter of time before North Korea develops the capability to strike the U.S. mainland". "But so far, perhaps nothing's happened and perhaps it has", Trump said.

China had warned North Korea that any nuclear test would trigger sanctions by China, Tillerson revealed to the media on Thursday.

Uruguay's UN Ambassador Elbio Rosselli, who sits on the UN Security Council, condemned the missile test as "very disgraceful" and "against global law and humanity".

The two earlier launches were conducted from an eastern coastal area, but Saturday's missile was sacked in the west, from an area near Pukchang, just north of the capital, Pyongyang.

  • Leroy Wright