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South Korean and US ships in show of force after North Korea 'missile test'

South Korea's navy has begun joint exercises with US ships, including the supercarrier USS Carl Vinson, in a show of force amid the growing threat posed by North Korea's nuclear and missile programmes.

The drills began hours after South Korean and US officials said they detected what they presumed was a failed missile launch from an area near the North Korean capital, Pyongyang.

The South Korean navy said the drill is aimed at "deterring North Korea's provocations and displaying the firm alliance between the United States and South Korea".

The USS Carl Vinson also participated in annual springtime drills between United States and South Korea in March.

North Korean ballistic missile tests are banned by the United Nations because they ar e seen as part of the North's push for a nuclear-tipped missile which can strike the US mainland.

The latest test came as US officials pivoted from a hard line to diplomacy at the UN in an effort to address what may be Washington's most pressing foreign policy challenge.

US president Donald Trump said on Twitter: "North Korea disrespected the wishes of China & its highly respected President when it launched, though unsuccessfully, a missile today. Bad!"

North Korea's state media has reiterated the country's goal of developing a nuclear missile capable of reaching the US.

The Rodong Sinmun newspaper also said the North revealed two types of new intercontinental ballistic missiles (ICBMs) in an April 15 military parade honouring its late state founder, Kim Il Sung, the grandfather of current ruler Kim Jong Un.

The parade featured previously unseen large rocket canisters and launcher trucks.

It said: "The large territory that is the United States has been entirely exposed to our pre-emptive nuclear strike means."

Referring to the United States sending the USS Carl Vinson aircraft carrier to Korean waters, the newspaper said that "rendering aircraft carriers useless is not even a problem" for its military.

The newspaper said the North displayed three types of ICBMs during the parade, including two new types that were inside the canisters.

Analysts say the North's existing liquid-fuel ICBMS, including the KN-08 and KN-14, are potentially capable of reaching the U.S. mainland, although the North has never flight tested them.

Norwegian foreign minister Borge Brende said Saturday on Twitter that "new missile test violates SC (Security Council) resolution. Urgent need for common action to reduce tension."

Norway, which is not a current member of the Security Council, is a founding member of the United Nations and has always considered the body as a cornerstone in its foreign policy.

In Japan, one of Tokyo's major subways systems shut down all lines for 10 minutes early on Saturday after receiving warning of a North Korean missile launch.

Tokyo Metro official Hiroshi Takizawa said the temporary suspension affected 13,000 passengers.

Service was halted on all nine lines at 6.07am. It resumed at 6.17am after it was clear there was no threat to Japan.

Mr Takizawa said it is the first time service had been stopped in response to a missile launch. Train service is generally suspended in Japan immediately after large earthquakes. Tokyo Metro decided earlier this month to stop for missile launch warnings as well.

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