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Saturday, 10 May 2014

'Killer robots' and their use to be debated at United Nations

The Independent 

Killer robots and their use will be debated during a meeting of experts at the United Nations in Geneva, amid fears that once created they could pose a “threat to humanity”.

Prof Ronald Arkin and Prof Noel Sharkey will debate the need for so-called killer robots during the UN Convention on Certain Conventional Weapons (CCW), marking the first time the issue of killer robots has been discussed within the CCW.

Killer robots are autonomous machines able to identify and kill targets without human input.

Fully autonomous weapons have not yet been developed but technological advances are bringing them closer to existing.

Prof Sharkey, a member and co-founder of the Campaign Against Killer Robots and chairman of the International Committee for Robot Arms Control spoke ahead of the conference and warned autonomous weapons systems cannot be guaranteed to "predictably comply with international law."

He told the BBC: "Nations aren't talking to each other about this, which poses a big risk to humanity."
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