North Korea missile launch failed - report

North Korea has tried and failed to launch a missile, South Korean media is reporting.

According to Yonhap News Agency, based in South Korea, the unidentified missile launch took place at the port city of Sinpo.

South Korea's Joint Chiefs of Staff said it failed to take off, while a Defence Ministry official told CNN the same. 

US Pacific Command detected the launch, said US Navy Commander Dave Benham, a spokesman for US Pacific Command.

"The missile blew up almost immediately," he told Reuters. "The type of missile is still being assessed."

There has been no confirmation on North Korean state media yet.

It comes as tensions rise on the Korean peninsula, with a war of words between North Korea and the South's ally, the US, and a day after the North held a military parade in its capital marking the birth anniversary of the state founder where what appeared to be new ballistic missiles were displayed.

US President Donald Trump recently called the North a "problem" that would be "taken care of".

Mr Trump has ordered a navy strike group flagshipped by a nuclear-powered aircraft carrier to head to the region as a show of force as his officials assess tougher economic sanctions, as well as military options against the North.

On Saturday (NZ time) North Korea threatened its own pre-emptive strike against the US.

"We've got a powerful nuclear deterrent already in our hands and we certainly will not keep our arms crossed in the face of a US pre-emptive strike," Vice Foreign Minister Han Song-ryol said.

"If the US comes with reckless military manoeuvres, then we will confront it with the DPRK's pre-emptive strike."

US Vice President Mike Pence, as part of a 10-day trip to Asia, arrives in South Korea on Sunday.

Reuters / Newshub.