Over the past few months, experts have been surprised by the media attention given to the Turkish-made Kargu-2 kamikaze drone or loitering munition. Everyone, it seems, wants to know if the use of the Kargu-2 in Libya in March 2020 was the first instance of an autonomous weapon being used in conflict.
To no one’s surprise, United Nations discussions on the regulation of autonomous weapons have stalled. Last year, the global pandemic caused delays, with only one week of discussions—partly in Geneva, Switzerland and partly virtual—taking place from September 21-25. November’s annual meeting of the Convention on Certain Conventional Weapons (CCW), at which the 2021 schedule for discussions on autonomous weapons would have been set, was cancelled.
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The United States is at the forefront of advancements in autonomous swarming technologies. A U.S. government-appointed panel has even said that the country has a “moral imperative” to develop weapons …
Even though multilateral arms control and disarmament efforts are of critical importance every year, the international security landscape was at a particularly troubling juncture just before the pandemic, not least because of risks associated with nuclear weapons.
Disarmament and arms control have not featured prominently, if at all, in mandate letters to Canada’s foreign ministers in many years. But at the end of 2019, Canadian Foreign Minister François-Philippe Champagne was given a new mandate to “advance international efforts to ban the development and use of fully autonomous weapons systems.”
The question now is what happens next and how will the mandate be implemented when UN discussions on this issue resume in June. While fully autonomous weapons systems do not yet exist, experts agree that they soon will.
From March 25 to 29, the Group of Governmental Experts on Lethal Autonomous Weapons met at the United Nations Convention on Certain Conventional Weapons in Geneva, Switzerland.
1. What are Killer Robots? Actually, pretty much what they sound like. These are autonomous weapons systems that could kill human beings without any human involvement in the critical functions …
Recently, Lockheed Martin, the U.S. aerospace and defence company, released a promotional video of its work on autonomous systems. The main message: “The future of autonomy isn’t human-less. It’s human …
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