On 10 April, the Irish launch of the Campaign to Stop Killer Robots took place at Trinity College Dublin with a keynote address by Professor Noel Sharkey, chair of the International Committee for Robot Arms Control, a founder of the global Campaign to Stop Killer Robots. Afri—a peace and human rights organisation that opposes war and militarization—held the launch in association with the International Peace Studies Programme of the Irish School of Ecumenics. Other organisations participating in the Irish Campaign to Stop Killer Robots include Amnesty International Ireland and Pax Christi Ireland.
Born in Belfast, Sharkey is a well-known robotics and artificial intelligence expert at the University of Sheffield in the UK. At the event, he called on the Irish government to show leadership on the crucial issue of ensuring human control over targeting and attack decisions by banning fully autonomous weapons.
In a press release, Afri described the launch as timely given the context of moves by some countries towards the use of lethal autonomous robotic weapons. It expressed strong support for call for a comprehensive ban and said it was “delighted” to have Professor Sharkey at the launch of campaign in Ireland.
Afri co-ordinator Joe Murray called for an urgent ban of autonomous weapons, noting “Should we allow the monumentally insane policy of developing fully autonomous weapons to be pursued then even the element of human intervention will be sidelined and we will have war and violence of epic proportions. It is time to wake up and shout stop.” Continue reading “Launch of the Irish campaign to Stop Killer Robots”