UN, Red Cross want bans, curbs on killer robots

Red Cross and the UN demand restrictions on lethal robots.

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To safeguard humanity from the potential” terrible consequences” of autonomous weapons, the UN and the Red Cross jointly issued a call for urgent new international regulations this week.

Finding solutions to” killer robots” is a global” humanitarian priority ,” according to UN secretary general Antonio Guterres and Mirjana Spoljaric, president of the International Committee for the Red Cross, on Thursday.

To” shield present and future generations from the consequences of their use ,” they urged states to enact specific bans and restrictions on autonomous weapon systems by 2026.

Clear international red lines will help all states in the current security environment, they claimed.

They claimed that autonomous weapon systems, which are typically defined as those that choose their targets and use force without the aid of humans,” pose serious humanitarian, legal, ethical, and security concerns.”

According to Guterres and Spoljaric, their growth and procreation have the potential to alter how wars are fought and exacerbate world unrest.

They claimed that by giving the impression that there is less risk to both civilians and military personnel, they may make it easier for people to get involved in conflicts and unintentionally increase violence.

” To maintain human control over the use of force, we must take immediate action.” Decisions about one’s life and death must still be under human control. We must not cross a moral line by allowing machines to autonomously target people.

International law should forbid” machine with the ability and discretion to take lives without human involvement.”


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The growing accessibility and sophistication of new technologies like artificial intelligence, which could be incorporated into autonomous weapons, according to the UN and ICRC chiefs, have increased their concerns.

The two argued that it was” unacceptably dangerous” to ban autonomous weapon systems that operate in unpredictable ways, such as those controlled by machine-learning algorithms.

The heads of the UN and ICRC also demanded strict limitations on all other autonomous weapon types, including their use, the kinds of targets they attack, and the amount of force employed.

Without a specific agreement on autonomous weapons, nations may have” different views” on how these rules might apply, even though international law forbids some weapons and limits the use of others.

They claimed that in order to prevent terrible consequences for humanity,” new international rules on autonomous weapons are therefore needed to clarify and strengthen existing law.”

They stated that they” call on world leaders to begin negotiations for a new, legally binding instrument to establish specific prohibitions and restrictions on autonomous weapon systems and to wrap them up by 2026.”

At the UN in Geneva, there have been discussions about killer robots in recent years, but no real negotiations have yet been started because there isn’t enough consensus among the nations.

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