Wellington Scoop

Parliament asked to ban killer robots

News from Campaign to Stop Killer Robots
Due to lockdown restrictions, the event to hand over the Aotearoa New Zealand Campaign to Stop Killer Robots’ petition to parliament to the Minister for Disarmament and Arms Control, Phil Twyford, on Wednesday will be held online from 1pm to 1.40pm.

The petition requests that the House of Representatives, as a matter of urgency: a) enact legislation to prohibit the development, production and use of lethal autonomous weapon systems in New Zealand; and b) urge the Government to support negotiations on a new treaty to retain meaningful human control over the use of force by prohibiting such weapons.

Autonomous weapon systems (killer robots) are designed to select and attack targets independently with no meaningful level of human control. They pose an unprecedented threat to humanity, are morally repugnant and require immediate action.

There is widespread support for national prohibitions on killer robots, and for states to negotiate a new treaty to retain meaningful human control over the use of force by prohibiting these weapon systems. This week, the Convention on Certain Conventional Weapons’ Group of Governmental Experts on Lethal Autonomous Weapon Systems is meeting again in Geneva to progress multilateral discussions on action to prohibit fully autonomous weapons and regulate others.

The petition handover will highlight speakers commenting on why it is important for New Zealand to act now on this critical threat to humanity, including Edwina Hughes, Coordinator, Aotearoa New Zealand Campaign to Stop Killer Robots; Professor Michael Winikoff, Co-Author of the 2019 New Zealand Open Letter on Killer Robots; Mary Wareham, Arms Advocacy Director, Human Rights Watch; Dylan Maynard, Masters of Strategic Studies student; and Matilda Byrne, National Coordinator, Australia Campaign to Stop Killer Robots; and conclude with remarks by the Minister.

All are welcome to attend, please register at https://www.eventbrite.co.nz/e/killer-robots-petition-to-parliament-handover-tickets-176754506487 for the event access details (registration will close at 12.30pm on Wednesday).

Social media and registration links: Facebook, https://www.facebook.com/events/1271843013270407 Tweets – Aotearoa New Zealand Campaign to Stop Killer Robots, https://twitter.com/KillerRobotsNZ/status/1440534598409097217 Minister for Disarmament, https://twitter.com/PhilTwyford/status/1441233621151481861 Register, https://www.eventbrite.co.nz/e/killer-robots-petition-to-parliament-handover-tickets-176754506487

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