Russia developing anti-terrorist robots

May 23, 2013

Robots at the Robofest-2013 youth festival in Moscow (credit: RIA Novosti, Artem Zhitenev)

Russian experts are developing robots designed to minimize casualties in terrorist attacks and neutralize terrorists, Russian Deputy Prime Minister Dmitry Rogozin said on May 17, RIA Novosti reports.

Robots could also help evacuate injured servicemen and civilians from the scene of a terrorist attack, said Rogozin, who oversees the defense industry.

Other anti-terror equipment Russia is developing includes systems that can see terrorists through obstacles and effectively engage them in a standoff mode at a long distance without injuring their hostages, he said.

Human Rights Watch has criticized fully autonomous weapons, known as “killer robots,” which would be able to select and engage targets without human intervention and called for the preemptive prohibition on such weapons, RIA Novosti said.

“Fully autonomous weapons do not exist yet, but they are being developed by several countries and precursors to fully autonomous weapons have already been deployed by high-tech militaries,” HRW said in a statement on its website. “Some experts predict that fully autonomous weapons could be operational in 20 to 30 years.”