Pence on way to SKorea after missile fail

North Korea on Saturday celebrated its biggest holiday with a military parade showing off its latest missiles, but the nation did not carry out a major weapons test.

No planned response is expected from the Trump administration because the official, who spoke on condition of anonymity to discuss the administration's initial understanding of the launch, said there was no need for the U.S.to reinforce the failure.

After inspecting an honor guard, Kim, in a black suit, watched the parade pour into Kim Il-Sung Square, accompanied by top military and party leaders, state television showed in a live broadcast.

(KRT via AP). In this image made from video broadcast by North Korean broadcaster KRT, soldiers take part in a parade at Kim Il Sung Square in Pyongyang, Saturday, April 15, 2017.

Tension had escalated sharply in the region amid concerns that the reclusive North may soon conduct a sixth nuclear test or a ballistic missile test launch timed with the April 15 anniversary it calls the "Day of the Sun".

According to the newspaper, Kim showed off "a lot" of its newest missiles, including a submarine-launched ballistic missile and a land-based missile, which theoretically could reach all of the United States.

North Korea showed off what appeared to a series of new missiles and launchers at its huge annual military parade in a clear message that it is ready to defend itself as a nuclear-powered USA aircraft carrier approached the region. It has said it has developed and would launch a missile that can strike the mainland United States but officials and experts believe it is some time away from mastering the necessary technology.

"We will respond to an all-out war with an all-out war and a nuclear war with our style of a nuclear attack", Choe Ryong-hae said during the parade. This matters because while North Korea regularly launches short-range missiles, it is also developing mid-range and long-range missiles meant to target US troops in Asia and, eventually, the USA mainland.

Pyongyang said it was a "complete success", South Korea's Yonhap News Agency reported.

The display featured what appeared to be a new long-range missile and two new types of large missile canisters.

North Korea has now flexed its military muscles in the face of escalating tensions with the United States by assembling thousands of troops in the capital of Pyongyang.

Despite speculation that the country would launch a nuclear test in celebration of its founder's birth on Saturday, North Korea declined to do so.

Mr Han Song said North Korea changed its military strategy two years ago, when the reports of "decapitation strike" training began to really get attention, to stress pre-emptive actions.

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

Recent satellite imagery suggests the country could conduct another underground nuclear test at any time.

Impoverished North Korea and the rich, democratic South are technically still at war because their 1950-53 conflict ended in a truce, not a peace treaty.

  • Anthony Vega