MEDIA ADVISORY

WHAT:

A parliamentary debate on killer robots or ‘lethal autonomous robotics’ with a Minister from Foreign and Commonwealth Office in the main chamber of the House of Commons.

WHY:

A UN Expert Report recently discussed at the Human Rights Council has called on states to put in place a moratorium on ‘lethal autonomous robotics’. A diverse and significant group of states welcomed the report, but the UK stood apart as the only country to reject the recommendation for a moratorium.

Fully autonomous weapons, or ‘lethal autonomous robotics’ in the UN report, are already being considered by several countries and could be deployed in the next 20 years. After deployment, these weapons would select and attack targets without further human intervention. Their use would give machines the power to decide who lives or dies on the battlefield – a development that crosses a fundamental moral boundary and raises serious legal concerns.

WHO:

Nia Griffith MP will give a 15-20 minute speech during the end of day adjournment debate in Parliament, to which a Minister from the Foreign and Commonwealth Office will respond. Other Members of Parliament may participate depending on time available.

WHEN:  

Monday 17 June at 10pm – although the debate may start earlier if the main business finishes early. The debate will last 30 minutes.

WHERE:                  

Main chamber in the Houses of Parliament.

CONTACT:

For more information and interview requests, contact:

Laura Boillot, Article 36, +44 (0)7515-575-175 or laura@article36.org

Nia Griffith MP, +44 (020) 7219 6102 or +44 (01554)-756-374 or nia.griffith.mp@parliament.uk

SPOKESPERSONS:

Nia Griffith – Member of Parliament, @NiaGriffithMP

Nia Griffith is Labour MP for Llanelli and Shadow Wales Minister. Nia is Vice Chair for the All-Party Parliamentary Group on Weapons and Protection of Civilians and issued a statement calling for a ban on killer robots in May 2013 http://niagriffith.org.uk/2013/05/nia-calls-for-ban-on-killer-robots/

Thomas Nash – Article 36, @nashthomas @article36

Thomas Nash is director of Article 36 and serves on the Steering Committee of the Campaign to Stop Killer Robots. As Coordinator of the Cluster Munition Coalition from 2004 to 2011, Nash led the global civil society efforts to secure the Convention on Cluster Munitions. Nash can speak about civil society expectations of UK policy, practice, and diplomacy on fully autonomous weapons.

Noel Sharkey – International Committee for Robot Arms Control, @StopTheRobotWar

Roboticist Noel Sharkey is Professor of Artificial Intelligence and Robotics at the University of Sheffield. He is co-founder and chair of the International Committee for Robot Arms Control (ICRAC), a group of experts concerned with the pressing dangers that military robots pose to peace and international security. Sharkey can speak on the technology that the campaign is seeking to prohibit. See also: http://bit.ly/9fJQ7j

 

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