Pence addresses troops on N. Korea 'provocation'

U.S. Vice President Mike Pence center left is greeted by U.S. and South Korean soldiers upon his arrival at Camp Bonifas outside of the Demilitarized Zone, near the border village of Panmunjom which has separated the two Koreas since the Korean

U.S. Vice President Mike Pence center left is greeted by U.S. and South Korean soldiers upon his arrival at Camp Bonifas outside of the Demilitarized Zone, near the border village of Panmunjom which has separated the two Koreas since the Korean

"I think he's trying to out-North Korean the North Koreans, so let's see if that works", said Hill, who previously served in the Clinton, Bush and Obama administrations as ambassador to Macedonia, Poland, South Korea and Iraq.

A North Korean missile exploded during launch Sunday from the country's east coast, USA and South Korean officials said, a high-profile failure that comes as a powerful US aircraft carrier approaches the Korean Peninsula in a show of force.

"The missile blew up nearly immediately".

It has carried out five nuclear tests -- two of them a year ago -- and multiple missile launches, one of which saw several rockets come down in waters provocatively close to Japan last month.

National security adviser Lt. Gen. H.R. McMaster said Sunday "all our options are on the table, undergoing refinement and further development" in reaction to the North Korean nuclear program.

North Korean leader Kim Jong Un has rebuffed admonitions from China and proceeded with nuclear and missile programs seen by Washington as a direct threat.

A White House foreign policy adviser says the type of missile that North Korea tried to fire on Sunday was medium-range, and that it exploded 4-5 seconds after it was launched.

North Korean leader Kim Jong Un (right) and Choe Ryong Hae, vice-chairman of the central committee of the Workers' Party, arrive for the official opening of the Ryomyong residential area, April 13, 2017, in Pyongyang, North Korea.

Another missile test from Sinpo failed earlier this month, when the rocket spun out of control and plunged into the ocean.

But the president's tweet indicated an openness to US intervention if China doesn't deal with the nuclear threat posed by the isolated country.

The Trump administration has touted some successes on that front in the past week, including the suspension of coal shipments from North Korea to China.

Despite Sunday's failure, the North's previous claim to have used "standardized" warheads has led to worries that it was making headway in its push to develop small and sophisticated warheads to be topped on long-range missiles.

China is seeking Russia's help to cool surging tensions over Pyongyang's nuclear ambitions, the country's foreign minister has told his Moscow counterpart, after Beijing warned of possible conflict over North Korea.

The UN Security Council has imposed six sets of sanctions against the North since its first nuclear test in 2006 - all of which have failed to halt its drive for what it insists are defensive weapons. This year Kim Jong Un indicated that his nation is in the final testing phase of an intercontinental ballistic missile (ICBM) that could potentially hit the US mainland. "If they are unable to do so, the US, with its allies, will!" he tweeted Thursday.

In the interview, the senior US national security official also urged the DPRK to stop the destabilizing behavior, stop the development of missiles, and denuclearize. Pence's visit comes amid increasing tensions and heated rhetoric on the Korean Peninsula.While the North did not conduct a nuclear test, the specter of a potentially escalated US response trailed Pence as he began a 10-day trip to Asia.Gen. H.R. McMaster, Trump's national security adviser, cited Trump's recent decision to order missile strikes in Syria after a chemical attack blamed on the Assad government as a sign that Trump "is clearly comfortable making tough decisions".

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