Hollywood directors and screenwriters are not the only ones making scenarios about the rise of killer robots and their destructive effect on humanity. Members of the European Parliament take these matters seriously and they have decided to pass a resolution that calls for a global ban. Their goal is to prevent the creation of autonomous weapon systems capable of killing people without human oversight.
This is not a new topic of conversation and the UN has made similar attempts that unfortunately fell flat as recent as last month. Some countries continue to see the upside of autonomous weapons and fear that the passing of such a resolution will hinder the development of AI and slow the advancement of science.
Stern Warnings from MEPs
The members of the parliament, who initiated the resolution as well as those who promoted and ultimately made it pass, have launched serious warnings. They are concerned by the prospect of an arms race starting between belligerent countries, capable of developing highly sophisticated systems. MEPs have argued that giving the machines the power to decide over life and death would be a huge error.
The European Parliament has scrambled to pass the resolution before the United Nations negotiations scheduled for November. They hope that when the representatives of dozens of countries meet at the UN headquarters, they will agree on banning the so-called killer robots. Researchers on artificial intelligence, such as Rasha Abdul Rahim have also supported the idea of banning fully autonomous weapons systems. He fears that international law is lagging behind the fast technological advancements in weaponry.
The resolution calling for an international ban represents an important milestone, but ultimately it could fail to reach its goal. That’s because powerful countries, such as the U.S., Russia, South Korea, and Israel have opposed the new measures earlier this year.