Intervention by Sri Lanka on General Considerations Section of the Chair’s Working paper on draft elements on possible consensus recommendations in relation to the clarification , consideration and development of aspects of the normative and operational

10 Aug 2021 Sri Lanka statement

Sri Lanka fully supports the reference to international human rights law in the general considerations section. Given the possibility of autonomous technology to be used in situations of armed conflicts as well as in law enforcement situations, recognition of the relevance of international human rights law and criminal law is important. Principles of non-discrimination and human dignity are cardinal principles of international human rights law which have a direct relevance to our discussion today.

Secondly Sri Lanka supports a stronger emphasis on ethical considerations. While it is understood that ethical dimension is already included in the IHL principles, a separate paragraph on this issue, we believe is an important reinstatement. Decisions on human life are too important to be left to the blunt expedient of a mechanical judgment.

Thirdly with regard to human control, contrary to the idea of some delegates last week, that the word control has no agreed understanding it has been a term used in international law to ascertain accountability. The accountability gap is one of the very reasons why human control in weapon systems is an essential prerequisite. Therefore we support the suggestion to include the element of human control and human machine interaction in the general considerations section.

Thank you Mr. Chair.

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