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Rights group launches campaign to ban ‘killer robots’

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Posted April 24, 2013
A mock "killer robot" pictured in central London on April 23, 2013 during the launch of the Campaign to Stop "Killer Robots". A global rights group launched the campaign on Tuesday to ban Terminator-style "killer robots" amid fears the rise of drone warfare could lead to machines with the power to make their own decisions about killing humans.

A mock “killer robot” pictured in central London on April 23, 2013 during the launch of the Campaign to Stop “Killer Robots”. A global rights group launched the campaign on Tuesday to ban Terminator-style “killer robots” amid fears the rise of drone warfare could lead to machines with the power to make their own decisions about killing humans.

A global rights group launched a campaign on Tuesday to ban Terminator-style “killer robots” amid fears the rise of drone warfare could lead to machines with the power to make their own decisions about killing humans.

Human Rights Watch said it was creating an international coalition to call for a global treatythat would impose a “pre-emptive and comprehensive ban” on artificially intelligent weapons before they are developed.

The New York-based group also warned of a possible “robotic arms race” if even one country took the step to allow such machines to enter service.

“Lethal armed robots that could target and kill without any human intervention should never be built,” said Steve Goose, arms division director at Human Rights Watch, said at the launch in London of the “Campaign To Stop Killer Robots”.

“A human should always be ‘in-the-loop’ when decisions are made on the battlefield.

“Killer robots would cross moral and legal boundaries, and should be rejected as repugnant to the public conscience.”

The campaign includes several non-governmental organisations involved in previous successful efforts to ban anti-personnel landmines, cluster munitions, and blinding lasers.

Activists wheeled out a home-made robot outside the Houses of Parliament in London for the launch of the campaign.

The United States has led the way in military robots such as the unmanned droneaircraft that carry out attacks and surveillance in countries including Pakistan, Afghanistan and Yemen.

Read more at: Phys.org

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