March 15 (UPI) -- North Korea slammed the United States on Thursday in a statement that described the world's largest economy as the "leader" in human rights abuses.
Pyongyang's Workers' Party newspaper Rodong Sinmun said the United States is "trying to ambitiously realize the domination principle that will not hesitate at bloodletting massacres."
The United States "is the leader in human rights abuses, a strangler of peace," the North Korean media statement read, in an article that ran under the headline "The Extremities of the Brazen-faced."
South Korean news service News 1 reported the North Korean newspaper might be responding to statements from the United Nations Human Rights Council condemning rights violations, as well as to various measures being pursued in Washington to further punish Pyongyang for abuses.
"For decades, the United States has violated our national rights with nuclear weapons, and severely threatening our people's right to live with stubborn sanctions," the Rodong added.
The North Korean statement said U.S. rights abuses are evident in gun violence, drone attacks against Pakistan and U.S. racism.
"The world's worst human rights violator, human rights annihilator is the United States."
South Korean outlet Newsis reported North Korea claimed it "guarantees human rights at the highest level" for its citizens, following international criticism of its rights record.
The report added the North might have issued the statement to "minimize" domestic instability ahead of summits with South Korea and the United States in April and May, respectively.