Trump: North Korea 'disrespected wishes of China' with missile test

The missile is said to have failed shortly after launch

Trump: North Korea 'disrespected wishes of China' with missile test

A man watches a TV news program reporting about North Korea's missile firing with a file footage, at Seoul Train Station. Picture by: Lee Jin-man/AP/Press Association Images

Donald Trump has accused North Korea of "disrespecting the wishes of China" following its latest ballistic missile test.

China is the North's main trading partner and the US president has been urging Beijing to try to rein in the reclusive state's military activities.

South Korea said Kim Jong-Un's regime had fired the rocket from around Pukchang, which is near the North's capital Pyongyang.

Seoul and Washington said it had apparently failed shortly after its launch.

A US official said it was likely to have been a medium-range KN-17 missile, which appeared to have broken up within minutes but did not leave North Korean territory.

It is believed to have reached a height of 70 km, and was the third unsuccessful test in recent weeks.

In an initial statement, the White House said the administration was 'aware' of the test.

The US leader later wrote on Twitter: 

"We must work together"

Mr Trump has warned there is a chance of a "major, major conflict" with North Korea due to rising tensions over its nuclear ambitions and missile tests.

The US president said he would "love to solve things (the North Korean problem) diplomatically but it's very difficult".

At a UN meeting in New York yesterday, US secretary of state Rex Tillerson urged the Security Council to put economic and diplomatic pressure on Pyongyang.

He said it was only a "matter of time" before the communist state was capable of hitting mainland America with a nuclear weapon.

He argued: "With each successive detonation and missile test, North Korea pushes Northeast Asia and the world closer to instability and broader conflict. The threat of a North Korean nuclear attack on Seoul, or Tokyo, is real.

"We have said this before and it bears repeating: the policy of strategic patience is over. Additional patience will only mean acceptance of a nuclear North Korea. The more we bide our time, the sooner we will run out of it."

He added: "I urge this council to act before North Korea does. We must work together to adopt a new approach and impose increased diplomatic and economic pressures on the North Korean regime."

Speaking after the meeting, North Korea's deputy ambassador to the UN said the country's nuclear weapons would never be part of "political bargains and economic deals".

"In a nutshell, DPRK have already declared not to attend any type of talks which would discuss its nuclear abandonment, nuclear disbandment," Kim In Ryong said.

He added that the nuclear programme "is the product of the United States' hostile policy towards DPRK".

South Korea has warned if the international community does not respond to the North's repeated provocations now, "we will only further feed the appetite of the trigger-happy regime in Pyongyang".