ICRAC’s new mission statement

After having fulfilled ICRAC’s founding mission declared in September 2009, ICRAC members have updated their mission  statement in July 2014. The new, 2014 Mission Statement reads as follows: Declared July 2014, updating the Original Mission Statement in light of ICRAC’s 2009 call to commence a discussion about robot arms control having been heard. Given the […]

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Banning Lethal Autonomous Weapon Systems (LAWS): The way forward

With ICRAC’s 2009 mission statement fulfilled and the issue of fully autonomous weapon systems picked up by the international community at the United Nations Convention on Conventional Weapons (CCW) in Geneva, ICRAC and the Campaign to Stop Killer Robots can celebrate a first success (Read more about this here and here and see the ICRAC […]

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ICRAC’s world leading female experts

Following on from the recent CCW informal meeting of experts at the UN in Geneva there has been considerable outcry about the total absence of women being invited to participate as experts. Nobel Peace Laureat Jody Williams led the charge at the meeting by pointing out the large number of relevant female experts that she […]

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ICRAC celebrates successful fulfillment of its 2009 mission

ICRAC is pleased to announce that it has fulfilled the first part of its founding mission statement declared in September 2009 at Sheffield by founding members Juergen Altmann, Peter Asaro, Noel Sharkey and Rob Sparrow. Given the rapid pace of development of military robotics and the pressing dangers that these pose to peace and international […]

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ICRAC closing statement to the UN CCW Expert Meeting

On May 16, ICRAC’s Frank Sauer delivered the following closing statement to the informal “Meeting of Experts“, gathered to discuss questions related to “lethal autonomous weapons systems” from May 13 to May 16 at the United Nations in Geneva, Switzerland. Closing statement by the International Committee for Robot Arms Control Convention on Conventional Weapons Meeting […]

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ICRAC statement on operational issues to the UN CCW Expert Meeting

On May 15, ICRAC’s Heather Roff delivered the following statement on operational issues to the informal “Meeting of Experts“, gathered to discuss questions related to “lethal autonomous weapons systems” from May 13 to May 16 at the United Nations in Geneva, Switzerland. Operational statement by the International Committee for Robot Arms Control Convention on Conventional […]

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ICRAC’s second statement on legal issues to the UN CCW Expert Meeting

On May 15, ICRAC’s David Akerson delivered the following statement, ICRAC’s second statement on legal issues, to the informal “Meeting of Experts“, gathered to discuss questions related to “lethal autonomous weapons systems” from May 13 to May 16 at the United Nations in Geneva, Switzerland. Legal statement by the International Committee for Robot Arms Control […]

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ICRAC statement on legal issues to the UN CCW Expert Meeting

On May 15, ICRAC’s Heather Roff delivered the following statement on legal issues to the informal “Meeting of Experts“, gathered to discuss questions related to “lethal autonomous weapons systems” from May 13 to May 16 at the United Nations in Geneva, Switzerland. Legal statement by the International Committee for Robot Arms Control Convention on Conventional […]

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ICRAC statement on technical issues to the UN CCW Expert Meeting

On May 14, ICRAC’s Denise Garcia delivered the following statement on technical issues to the informal “Meeting of Experts“, gathered to discuss questions related to “lethal autonomous weapons systems” from May 13 to May 16 at the United Nations in Geneva, Switzerland. Technical statement by the International Committee for Robot Arms Control Convention on Conventional […]

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ICRAC opening statement to the UN CCW Expert Meeting

On May 13, ICRAC’s Juergen Altmann delivered the following statement to the informal “Meeting of Experts“, gathered to discuss questions related to “lethal autonomous weapons systems” from May 13 to May 16 at the United Nations in Geneva, Switzerland. Opening statement by the International Committee for Robot Arms Control Convention on Conventional Weapons Meeting of […]

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Is Russia Leading the World to Autonomous Weapons?

The short answer is no. But Russia is testing and may deploy at its ICBM bases a lethal mobile system which has “automatic and semi-automatic control modes.” Additionally, Deputy Prime Minister Dmitry Rogozin has recently called for “robotic systems that are fully integrated in the command and control system, capable not only to gather intelligence […]

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The Road to Geneva: ICRAC and the Campaign headed to CCW Expert Meeting

In its 2009 mission statement, ICRAC urgently called upon the international community to commence a discussion about arms control in the realm of military robotics. Thanks to the work of NGOs forming the “Campaign to Stop Killer Robots” coalition, a coalition that is constantly growing since April 2013 and of which ICRAC is one of […]

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Lethal Autonomous Robots and the UN Convention on Conventional Weapons (CCW)

The Campaign to Stop Killer Robots, of which ICRAC is one of the founding members, shared a video explaining how the issue of lethal autonomous robots has been picked up by the international community at the United Nations Convention on Conventional Weapons in Geneva. The purpose of the Convention is to ban or restrict the […]

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Geneva Academy Debate: Matthew Waxman vs. ICRAC’s Peter Asaro

Autonomous Weapon Systems: Dangerous Killer Robots or Smarter and Less-Harmful Warfare?, Geneva Academy Debate, Wedesday 20 November 11am – 1pm, Maison de la Paix (Chemin Eugène-Rigot 2), Geneva. The motion under debate will be: “Should there be an absolute ban on autonomous systems capable of using lethal force?” Two key speakers will argue for and […]

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Georgia Tech “TechDebate”: Ron Arkin vs. ICRAC’s Rob Sparrow

“Published on 21 Nov 2013 – This video is of the inaugural debate in the TechDebates on Emerging Technologies series, which focused on Lethal Autonomous “Killer” Robots. LARs are machines that can decide to kill. Such technology has the potential to revolutionize modern warfare and more. The need for understanding LARs is essential to decide […]

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Campaign to Stop Killer Robots takes significant step forward at UN

ICRAC welcomes the historic decision taken by nations to begin international discussions on how to address the challenges posed by fully autonomous weapons. The agreement marks the beginning of a process that the campaign believes should lead to an international ban on these weapons to ensure there will always be meaningful human control over targeting decisions […]

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ICRAC Delivers Statement to States Parties to the Convention on Conventional Weapons at the UN in Geneva

International Community Must Act Now to Ensure Combat Will Never Be Outsourced to “Killer Robots”! – I am speaking on behalf of the International Committee for Robot Arms Control (ICRAC), a founding NGO member of the Campaign to Stop Killer Robots. Since its establishment in 2009, ICRAC has urged the international community to discuss the […]

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News Roundup: Banning Lethal Autonomous Robots

Over the last couple of months, lethal autonomous robots (LARs) went from a sidelined issue to not only a hotly and widely debated topic but most importantly an official item of United Nations (UN) arms control diplomacy. This post provides an overview over recent media coverage as well as events and statements given at the UN. The […]

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ICRAC Member and Campaign to Stop Killer Robots Deliver Statements at the UN General Assembly First Committee

On behalf of global civil society organizations, International Committee for Robot Arms Control member Matthew Bolton calls for disarmament and arms control “driven by the needs and rights of people most affected by armed violence.” The Campaign to Stop Killer Robots also spoke, calling for fully autonomous weapons to “be prohibited through an international treaty, […]

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Futureproofing Is Never Complete: Ensuring the Arms Trade Treaty Keeps Pace with New Weapons Technology

In a new working paper, International Committee for Robot Arms Control (ICRAC) members Matthew Bolton (Pace University) and Wim Zwijnenburg (IKV Pax Christi) stress the importance of making sure states control new weapons technologies, including robotic weapons, when the Arms Trade Treaty enters into force. It outlines strategies for civil society (such as the Control […]

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Computing experts from 37 countries call for ban on killer robots

Decision to apply violent force must not be delegated to machines! More than 270 engineers, computing and artificial intelligence experts, roboticists, and professionals from related disciplines are calling for a ban on the development and deployment of weapon systems that make the decision to apply violent force autonomously, without any human control. In a statement […]

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A meme is born: autonomous = secure

One of Joshua Foust’s assertions in his debate with Heather Roff was that making weapons autonomous was necessary in order to secure them against the threat of hacking. I posted a response after Foust reiterated this surprising argument in an article which seems to have gone semi-viral on the internet–launching what seems likely to become a persistent meme […]

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ICRAC’s Heather Roff debates Joshua Foust

Naval Postgraduate School CRUSER Robo-Ethics Continuing Education Series (RECES) Robo-Ethics Panelist Debate (Part 3)

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NYT warns of killer robot gap

New York Times science writer John Markoff reported on Sept.23 that the US military “lags” in development of unmanned ground vehicles (UGVs), which is sort of true if you compare the status of UGVs with that of unmanned air vehicles (UAVs). The real reason, as Markoff acknowledges, has to do with the technical difficulty of […]

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The Politics of Killer Robots: Experts Consider Political, Legal and Ethical Implications of Drones and Other Robotic Weapons at Pace University Symposium

Not all conduct is justified in war. Centuries of tradition – from religious texts to chivalry and honor codes to modern international humanitarian and human rights law – have limited what weapons armed groups can use, who and what they can target and where and when they may fight. Each new innovation in military technologies […]

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