All action and achievements

(Washington, DC): Campaign coordinator Mary Wareham addresses an Arena Civil Dialogues event on artificial intelligence called "The robots are coming!”
More than 200 technology companies and organizations from more than 36 countries and 2,600 individual signed on to a pledge released by the Future of Life Institute at the International Joint Conference on Artificial Intelligence in Stockholm, committing to “neither participate in nor support the development, manufacture, trade, or use of lethal autonomous weapons.”
The European Parliament adopts a resolution that calls for the urgent negotiation of “an international ban on weapon systems that lack human control over the use of force.” The resolution calls on the European Council to work towards such a ban and “urgently develop and adopt a common position on autonomous weapon systems.”
The Belgian parliamentary defence committee approve a resolution calling for the Belgian government to support international efforts to prohibit the use of fully autonomous weapons and ensure that the Belgian army will never use them.
Google publishes a set of ethical principles that includes a pledge from the company to not develop artificial intelligence for use in weapons. Days earlier, it was revealed that the company will end its participation in Project Maven when the contract expires next year.
A group of lawmakers in Japan hold a parliamentary seminar on killer robots together with local NGOs and AI experts.
House of Lords committee on artificial intelligence report recommends the UK government amend its far-fetched definition of fully autonomous weapons systems and bring it into line with other countries.
Fifth CCW meeting on lethal autonomous weapons systems chaired by Ambassador Gill.  Austria, China, Colombia, and Djibouti join the growing list of countries calling for a ban on fully autonomous weapons, bringing the total to 26. Calls to start negotiating new internatioinal law intensify.
After artificial intelligence experts issue a letter calling for a boycott of Korea Advanced Institute of Science and Technology (KAIST), the university issues a statement clarifying that it “does not have any intention to engage in development of lethal autonomous weapons systems.”
In a letter the Campaign to Stop Killer Robots seeks clarification from France on the military’s intention to develop or acquire fully autonomous weapons.
The African Union and African states held a seminar in Geneva to consider greater regional collaboration to address concerns over fully autonomous weapons.
In a letter the Campaign to Stop Killer Robots invites Google to endorse the call to ban fully autonomous weapons and answer concerns over its participation in a controversial Pentagon-funded project to autonomously process video footage shot by US surveillance drones.
In a letter to the Republic of Korea’s Minister of Foreign Affairs, Kang Kyung-Wha, the Campaign to Stop Killer Robots urged the government to support the call to ban fully autonomous weapons and address concerns raised by a new “Research Center for the Convergence of National Defense and Artificial Intelligence” opened by KAIST and defense manufacturer Hanwha Systems Co., Ltd.
Campaign coordinator Mary Wareham addresses a panel at the Munich Security Conference on artificial intelligence and modern conflict.
Campaign to Stop Killer Robots outreach to states in Geneva.
(Brussels) A total of 116 scientists working in fields including artificial intelligence, robotics and computer science issue an open letter calling on Belgium to support a ban on weapon systems lacking meaningful human control over the critical functions of targeting and engagement in every attack.
(Copenhagen): Danish Institute for International Studies holds its second public seminar on autonomous weapons. On December 5, Denmark’s largest newspaper Politiken published an article by Campaign to Stop Killer Robots coordinator Mary Wareham asking why Denmark is not actively working to address this serious concern.
First meeting of the Group of Governmental Experts on lethal autonomous weapons systems, chaired by Ambassador Amandeep Singh Gill of India. At the annual CCW meeting on 24 November, states agreed to continue the formal deliberations under the current chair and scheduled two week-long meetings of the Group of Governmental Experts in 2018.
Boston) A 7:47-minute fictional film by artificial intelligence expert Professor Stuart Russell entitled “Slaughterbots” has been watched more than two million times within a month. The film has been translated into multiple languages, generating a slew of media coverage around the world. The Boston-based Future of Life Institute funded production of the film and has created this new website to encourage other actions in support of the ban call:
(London): WIRED conference panel on autonomous weapons with DeepMind and campaign representatives.
(Ottawa) More than 200 Canadians working in the field of artificial intelligence, including AI pioneers Geoffrey Hinton and Yoshua Bengio, issued an open letter to Prime Minister Justin Trudeau, demanding Canada to support the call to ban lethal autonomous weapons systems and commit to working with other states to conclude a new international agreement that achieves this objective
(Canberra) More than 120 members of the Australian AI research community write to Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull to demand that Australia endorse the call to ban lethal autonomous weapons systems and work to conclude a new international agreement that achieves this objective.
The Permanent Mission of Mexico and the Campaign to Stop Killer Robots convene a side event briefing for UNGA First Committee delegates. Other 2017 UNGA First Committee side events hosted by Kazakhstan on 4 October, UNIDIR on 5 October, and Germany on 25 October also considered killer robots concerns. During the 72nd session of the UNGA First Committee, at least 34 states and three regional groups raised lethal autonomous weapons systems in their statements.
At an informal briefing convened by Germany, the campaign tells states that it is beyond disappointed by the current state of the CCW process, distributes open letter AI and robotics founders to CCW delegates.
Campaign coordinator Mary Wareham speakers at an ICRC meeting on the ethics of autonomous weapons systems.
During the International Joint Conference on Artificial Intelligence (IJCAI) in Melbourne, Professor Toby Walsh released an open letter demanding a stronger response to concerns over killer robots signed by founders and directors of more than 100 AI and robotics companies.
The Swiss government declines to support two parliamentary motions proposing that Switzerland seeking a preemptive ban on lethal autonomous weapons systems. Swiss president and current Minister of Foreign Affairs Didier Burkhalter expressed support for the principle but questioned the need to take action. The next day day Burkhalter announced his retirement from politics, effective later this year.
The Under-Secretary-General High Representative for Disarmament Affairs, Izumi Nakamitsu, makes her first public remarks on autonomous weapons during an address to a high-level summit held in Geneva on “Artificial Intelligence for Good.” She says states must discuss a range of issues relating to the weapons, particularly “what they consider to be the acceptable degree of human control over the lethal functions of a weapon system, and whether a specific international treaty or instrument is required to ensure that control is maintained.” Campaign co-founder Amnesty International’s secretary-general Salil Shetty reiterated the urgent need for a preemptive ban on fully autonomous weapons.
Campaign representatives joined diplomats for an informal meeting to discuss ethical concerns over lethal autonomous weapons systems convened at the UN by the Permanent Mission of the Holy See to the UN in Geneva in conjunction with the Caritas in Veritate Foundation.
CCW president-designate Ambassador Matthew Rowland of the UK announces that the first meeting of the newly established Group of Governmental Experts scheduled for 21-25 August has been cancelled due to a lack of funds.
The new Secretary-General of the United Nations, António Guterres, informs the Campaign to Stop Killer Robots by letter of the UN’s shared concern at “the prospect of weapons systems that can autonomously select and engage targets.”
The Norwegian Labor Party adopts an electoral programme that commits it, if elected, to “bring international weapons control and disarmament work forward and taking necessary initiatives to regulate the development and use of fully and semi-autonomous weapon systems.”
Pakistan’s new Foreign Secretary, Tehmina Janjua, reaffirms the government’s support for the goal of a preemptive ban on lethal autonomous weapons systems in a letter to the Campaign to Stop Killer Robots.
At the Fifth Review Conference of the Convention on Conventional Weapons states establish a Group of Governmental Experts (GGE) to formalize the process on lethal autonomous weapons and meet for two weeks in 2017. The group of nations endorsing the call to ban these weapons expands to 19 with the additions of Argentina, Guatemala, Panama, Peru, and Venezuela. China for the first time called for new international law on killer robots, providing the precedent of the CCW protocol banning blinding lasers.
HRW’s Bonnie Docherty addresses OPNAV and CNA Center for Strategic Studies Future Strategy Forum in Washington DC.
Danish Institute for International Studies public seminar on killer robots in Copenhagen.
Campaign coordinator Wareham speaks on a panel on autonomy in military operations a Carnegie Endowment for International Peace & Carnegie Mellon University colloquium on technology, innovation and international affairs.
Campaign coordinator Mary Wareham addresses a panel on robots & artificial intelligence at a Harvard University Law and International Development Society symposium on technology.
Campaign side event briefing for UNGAFirst Committee on Disarmament and International Security delegates with Pakistan’s Ambassador Tehmina Janjua, president of the CCW’s Fifth Review Conference, AI expert Professor Stuart Russell, and Human Rights Watch arms director Steve Goose. During the 71st session of the UNGA First Committee, at least 36 states expressed support for the efforts to address concerns over lethal autonomous weapons systems.
Kanae Doe of HRW speaks at the World Business Council for Peace in 2016 conference on inhumane weapons and killer robots.
Campaign members Richard Moyes of Article 36 and Heather Roff of ICRAC attend United Kingdom’s Second International Weapon Review Forum in Shrivenham.
Campaign coordinator Mary Wareham speaks on a panel on lethal autonomous weapons systems at a conference on emerging technologies held by the PIR Center and diplomatic academy of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Russian Federation.
Heather M. Roff of Arizona State University publishes the first publicly-available dataset tracking military autonomy, which identifies 284 weapons systems with autonomous features.
Heather M. Roff of Arizona State University publishes the first publicly-available dataset tracking military autonomy, which identifies 284 weapons systems with autonomous features.
Stockholm International Peace Research Institute (SIPRI) & Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers (IEEE) workshop on autonomous systems and their societal impact.
Preparatory meeting for the CCW’s Fifth Review Conference. More than 30 states reaffirmed the objective of establishing a Group of Governmental Experts in December. Only one nation expressed reluctance.
Buzzfeed publishes an 8,000-word long-read by Sarah Topal on autonomous weapons, providing an unprecedented profile of the Campaign to Stop Killer Robots, diplomatic process, and state of development of autonomous weapons.
International Committee for Robot Arms Control meeting in London
Campaign to Stop Killer Robots strategy retreat, meetings in the Hague with officials and parliamentarians, public forum at De Balie in Amsterdam
Third Convention on Conventional Weapons (CCW) informal meeting of experts on lethal autonomous weapons systems. The group of states calling for a ban expands to xx following statements by Algeria, Chile, Costa Rica, Mexico, and Nicaragua.
Association for Aid and Relief, Japan event in Tokyo on autonomous weapons concerns with campaign coordinator Mary Wareham
German Foreign Office & SWP (German Institute for International and Security Affairs) workshop in Berlin on defining autonomy and autonomous weapons.
Second experts meeting on autonomous weapons systems convened by the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC).
The ethics council of the $830 billion Norwegian Government Pension Fund Global announces that it intends to begin monitoring companies investing in the potential development of fully autonomous weapons systems and see if such investments would be contrary to the fund’s investment policies and ethical guidelines. Council chair Johan H. Andreson describes the initiative as “a statement of fair warning, a heads-up.”
report for the Human Rights Council on the proper management of assemblies by two Special Rapporteurs recommends that: “Autonomous weapons systems that require no meaningful human control should be prohibited.” This upgrades a moratorium call first issued by one of the Special Rapporteurs in 2013.
The World Economic Forum and TIME convene a panel of disarmament, weapons, and robotics experts to consider “what if robots went to war?” in Davos, Switzerland. Killer robots were first raised at the forum during a 2015 panel on technology.
Nations agree to hold a third meeting in 2016 to continue deliberations on lethal autonomous weapons systems at the Convention on Conventional Weapons (CCW). Campaigners are denied access to an informal consultation after the United Kingdom objects, breaking a 20 year practice of NGO participation at such sessions. During the meetingIraqNicaragua, Kazakhstan, and Zimbabwearticulate their views on killer robots for the first time, making a total of 66 states that have spoken on the topic since 2013.
At the UN General Assembly First Committee on Disarmament and International Security in New York, 32 governments and five groups of states raise autonomous weapons concerns, including BotswanaKuwaitLebanon, and Romania for the first time. AI letter signatory Professor Toby Walshaddresses a Campaign to Stop Killer Robots side event held together with Costa Rica on 20 October as well as a press conference.
More than 1,000 artificial intelligence and robotics researchers and 15,000 other endorsers sign an open letter calling for a ban on autonomous weapons. By January 2016, more than 3,000 AI experts have signed the call.
Representatives from 90 nations, UN agencies, the ICRC, and the Campaign to Stop Killer Robots attend the second Convention on Conventional Weapons meeting on lethal autonomous weapons systems, chaired by Ambassador Michael Biontino of Germany.
Canadian Red Cross and Carlton University hold an event in Ottawa on “‘Killer Robots:  The Future of Weaponry and IHL.”
Steve Goose, HRW and Prof. Ron Arkin of Georgia Tech debate on autonomous weapons at the annual Association for the Advancement of Artificial Intelligence (AAAI) conference in Austin, TX.
After the first conference held by the Future of Life Institute on the “future of artificial intelligence” in Puerto Rico on Jan. 2-4, prominent scientists and researchers from industry and academia issue an open letter calling for AI and smart machine research that is “robust and beneficial” to humanity and linking to a document outlining “research directions that can help maximize the societal benefit of AI” including numerous questions on ‘lethal autonomous weapons systems.’ On January 14, Elon Musk announces a $10 million donation to implement the research call. The Campaign to Stop Killer Robots welcomes the initiative’s inclusion of autonomous weapons concerns as an interdisciplinary research priority.
The Dalai Lama (1989) and other Nobel Peace Laureates issue a declaration that states, “we support the call for a pre-emptive ban on fully autonomous weapons (killer robots) – weapons that would be able to select and attack targets without human intervention” and urges “we must prevent this new form of inhumane warfare.
Nations agree to hold a second Convention on Conventional Weapons meeting 2015 on lethal autonomous weapons systems. Colombia and Palestine speak on the matter for the first time. Strong turn-out for consecutive side events on autonomous weapons. Front page The New York Times article.
More than 70 faith leaders of various denominations including Archbishop Desmond Tutu of South Africa endorse an interfaith call to action against fully autonomous weapons.
During the UN General Assembly First Committee on Disarmament and International Security in New York, 23 governments include killer robots in their remarks, including Bulgaria and Finland for the first time. Strong turn-out for a Campaign to Stop Killer Robots side event held together with Croatia on 21 October, which featured Ryan Garipy of Clearpath Robotics.
ClearPath Robotics of Kitchener, Canada issues a statement pledging its support for the call for a preemptive ban on fully autonomous weapons. The company says it will continue to work with its military clients, but has “vouched to not manufacture weaponized robots that remove humans from the loop” as it “has chosen to value our ethics over potential future revenue.”
Representatives from 87 nations, UN agencies, the ICRC, and the Campaign to Stop Killer Robots participate in the first multilateral meeting on “lethal autonomous weapons systems”  at the UN in Geneva. Convened under the auspices of the Convention on Conventional Weapons (CCW), the informal meeting features presentations by 18 experts on technical, ethical, legal, and operational questions raised by the weapons. Czech RepublicGuatemalaMali, and Norway speak for the first time on the matter at the meeting.
Jody Williams (1997) and 20 other Nobel Peace laureates issue a joint call for a preemptive ban on fully autonomous weapons. Signatories include Mairead Maguire (1976), Betty Williams (1976), Rigoberta Menchú Tum (1992), Shirin Ebadi (2003), Leymah Gbowee (2011), and Tawakkol Karman (2011), who together with Williams are members of the Nobel Women’s Initiative, a co-founder of the Campaign to Stop Killer Robots. They also include former presidents Lech Walesa of Poland (1983), Oscar Arias Sánchez of Costa Rica (1987), F.W. de Klerk of South Africa (1993), and José Ramos-Horta of Timor-Leste (1996).
(Geneva)   First experts meeting on autonomous weapons systems convened by the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) and attended by 21 nations plus campaign members. Read the report of the meeting.
Campaigners brief a meeting of the UN Secretary-General’s Advisory Board on Disarmament Matters in New York
By a vote of 534–49, the European Parliament adopt its first resolution calling for a ban on “development, production and use of fully autonomous weapons which enable strikes to be carried out without human intervention”
At a Strategy Meeting of the Campaign to Stop Killer Robots in London, PAX (formerly IKV Pax Christi) launches a brief animation film for the campaign and its first report on killer robots
Chatham House holds its first conference on autonomous military technologies
US Naval War College holds a workshop on “legal implications of autonomous weapons systems” attended by armed forces representatives from the US, Australia, Canada, Israel, and UK.
Geneva Academy of International Humanitarian Law and Human Rights experts meeting in Divonne, Switzerland on armed drones and robots
Geneva Academy of International Humanitarian Law and Human Rights debate on autonomous weapons by ICRAC’s Dr. Peter Asaro and Prof. Matt Waxman of the Lawfare Blog.
States parties to the Convention on Conventional Weapons agree to a mandate to begin work in 2014 on the emerging technology of “lethal autonomous weapons systems.”  
Italian campaign events in Rome with Nobel Laureate Ms. Jody Williams.
At the the Convention on Conventional Weapons in Geneva, 35 nation express their views on autonomous weapons systems, including 15 nations for the first time: Australia, Belarus, Belgium, Canada, Croatia, Ghana, Holy See, Israel, Italy, Lithuania, Madagascar, South Korea, Spain, Turkey, and Ukraine. A Campaign to Stop Killer Robots side event on Nov. 13 attracts 120 delegates from dozens of countries.
AAR-Japan hosts an event in Tokyo featuring a presentation by ICRAC’s Dr. Peter Asaro.
IKV Pax Christi’s Miriam Struyk speaks on autonomous weapons and military technology at the University of Amsterdam.
During the UN General Assembly First Committee on Disarmament and International Security in New York, 16 governments articulate their views on killer robots in their statements, including for the first time Costa RicaEcuadorGreece, India, IrelandJapanNetherlandsNew Zealand, and South Africa. There is strong turn-out for two consecutive side events on autonomous weapons: a UNIDIR briefing by Professor Christof Heyns and a Campaign to Stop Killer Robots briefing held with Switzerland on 21 October.
HRW’s Steve Goose debates Georgia Tech Professor Ron Arkin at a Zebis (Zentrum für ethische Bildung in den Streitkräften) event in Berlin on autonomous weapons.
Norges Fredslaget begins a public campaign to secure Norwegian support for a ban on fully autonomous weapons.
More than 20 countries attend a seminar convened by France at the UN in Geneva on fully autonomous weapons systems.
The International Committee of the Red Cross issues a “new technologies” edition of its quarterly journal, including fully autonomous weapons.
A University of Massachusetts survey of 1,000 Americans finds a majority oppose fully autonomous weapons and support actions to campaign against them
UK parliament holds its first-ever adjournment debate on lethal autonomous robots.
Kill Decision author Daniel Suarez calls for an international treaty to ban autonomous robotic weapons in his TED talk in Edinburgh.
During the first Human Rights Council debate on lethal autonomous robotics following the presentation of the report by the UN special rapporteur on extra-judicial killings, 20 nations speak for the first time on the matter. Pakistan spoke first and called for a ban. Other statements were delivered by AlgeriaAustriaBrazilChinaCubaEgyptFranceGermanyIndonesiaIranMexicoMoroccoRussiaSierra LeoneSwedenSwitzerlandUK, and US, as well as the European UnionOrganization of the Islamic Conference, Latin American network GRULAC, and Campaign to Stop Killer Robots. More than 20 nations attend the campaign’s first-ever side event on May 28. See report.
Campaign representatives participate in a seminar on unmanned military systems in SWP in Berlin.
Apr. 22-23: The Campaign to Stop Killer Robots is launched in London with an all-day NGO conference, press briefing, and Parliamentary event.
The US Department of Defense issues a policy directive on autonomous weapons, making the US the first government to spell out its policy on these weapons.
Human Rights Watch and Harvard Law School’s International Human Rights Clinic launch a 49-page report Losing Humanity: The Case Against Killer Robots, which calls for a pre-emptive ban on fully autonomous weapons.
At a Campaign Summit in New York representatives from 40 NGOs working in humanitarian disarmament commit to take action against fully autonomous weapons.
Representatives from seven NGOs meet in New York and agree to form a coordinated civil society “Campaign to Stop Killer Robots” aimed at securing a preemptive prohibition on the development, production, and use of fully autonomous weapons.
British NGO Article 36 calls for a ban on military systems that are able to select and attack targets autonomously.
Dutch NGO IKV Pax Christi issues a report outlining its ethical and legal concerns with the use of armed drones and autonomous weapons.
In an article for the International Journal of Intelligence Ethics, Nobel Peace Laureate Jody Williams calls for a ban on “fully autonomous attack and kill robotic weapons.”
ICRAC convenes its first workshop in Berlin where its members call for an international treaty to prohibit development, acquisition, deployment, and use of armed autonomous robot weapons.
report by United Nations (UN) Special Rapporteur on Extrajudicial, Summary or Arbitrary Executions, Prof. Philip Alston, finds that, “Urgent consideration needs to be given to the legal, ethical and moral implications of the development and use of robotic technologies, especially but not limited to uses for warfare.”
Noel Sharkey, Jürgen Altmann, Peter Asaro, and Rob Sparrow agree to establish the International Committee for Robot Arms Control (ICRAC), calling, inter alia, for “prohibition of the development, deployment and use of armed autonomous unmanned systems”
Landmine Action (now Action on Armed Violenceexpresses support for the creation of an international treaty against robots that make their own targeting decisions.
In the Guardian, roboticist Prof. Noel Sharkey warns against the development of fully autonomous robots that make their own decisions about lethality and calls for their urgent international regulation.