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Study on the human rights implications of the usage of drones and unmanned robots in warfare

This 54-page study recommends that the European Union launch an intergovernmental consensus-building process including experts meetings on “legal constraints and/or ethical reservations.”

In recent years, the use of drones and other unmanned robots in warfare and other situations of violence has increased exponentially, and States continue to invest significantly into increasing the operational autonomy of such systems. The present study provides an overview of the current and likely future use of such systems and examines the relevant legal implications under human rights law, international humanitarian law and the UN Charter.

[F]or the foreseeable future … any application of military force through armed drones must necessarily remain under the control of a human operator.

Dr. Nils Melzer for the European Parliament’s Directorate-Genera

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