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Heather A. Conley, Vladimir Orlov, Gen. Evgeny Buzhinsky, Cyrus Newlin, Sergey Semenov and Roksana Gabidullina
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Lethal Autonomous Robots: A Test for the International Humanitarian Law

Elliot Serbin

The recent decades were marked with a tremendous progress in the development of the robotic technologies and their adaptation for practical use in very different fields and niches. However, in the nearest future the real beneficiaries of this technological progress might become the military, who are trying to bring to life a new class of lethal autonomous robotic systems (LARS). In 2013 the issue of LARS was for the first time addressed at the UN General Assembly. But what seems to be an early call in fact might be a belated reaction; the killers robots are a total blank spot for the existing system of the international law, including the international humanitarian law (jus in bello) and the law of armed conflict (jus ad bellum). The author explores how the international community might try to respond to this legal challenge now, in a decade before we witness LARS performing combat missions throughout the world.

Lethal Autonomous Robots: A Test for the International Humanitarian Law (full text)


Security Index: A Russian Journal on International Security, Volume 20, Issue 3-4, 2014