European Parliament calls for ban on drone killings

The following information has been received from Plaid Cymru:-

On 27th February the European Parliament called for a ban on the use of drones for targeted killings. It adopted a resolution from Plaid Cymru’s political group supporting a common policy in the EU on the use of drones and for a ban on fully autonomous weapons which can kill without human intervention.  The party’s MEP Jill Evans said:

“Thousands of civilians in several countries have been killed and injured  by drone strikes. Many of us have seen on our television screens the misery and devastation caused by targeted aerial killings. The increasing use of these weapons raises serious legal, ethical and security issues. This is of direct relevance to Wales as the Welsh government has encouraged the testing of drones in Wales. The whole of north Carmarthenshire is designated an air corridor for the testing of military drones between the air base at Aberporth and the military training area on Epynt mountain.

Millions of pounds has been spent on drone research and now EU governments and the Commission are planning to develop their own EU drone programme. I am opposed to this but at least the parliament has called for their use to be legally regulated to prevent a new arms race and to stop research on fully autonomous weapons which enable strikes to be carried out without human intervention.”

Jill Evans MEP, who represents the whole of Wales in the European Parliament, said that armed drones should be included in relevant European and international disarmament and arms control negotiations, which is not the case at the moment:

“We called for a ban on the use of armed drones for targeted killings and for a policy which upholds human rights and international humanitarian law. It was recognised by parliament that drone strikes outside a declared war zone and on the territory of another state without consent  were a violation of international law.”

NOTE: Here is the adopted report:http://www.europarl.europa.eu/sides/getDoc.do?type=MOTION&reference=B7-2014-0202&language=EN

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