Since it started using drones or (Unmanned Aerial Vehicles) UAV, in numbers of states against many alleged terrorist organisations, the USA, according to countless reports, has killed, maimed and injured many innocent civilians in the course of its operations. In addition to its complications in international law and international humanitarian law, as it invades the aerial space of sovereign states namely Pakistan, Iraq and Yemen, its human cost is very high indeed.
The claim of the Obama administration that such remote killing is justifiable and legitimate is a cause of great concern, therefore AFD International is calling on president Obama to restrict the use of such weapons till its ruling in international has been established. The right to life is a fundamental right and the use of arbitrary force instead of arresting and bringing culprits and criminals to justice will set a dangerous precedent in international arena.
The United Nations confirmed that at least 450 civilians may have been killed in Pakistan, Afghanistan and Yemen by US drone strikes. The Pakistani government has also confirmed that 400 of its civilians has been dead, and more than 2000 have been killed in the last decade, this has caused a lot of tension and anger between the Pakistani state and its citizen which is seen as it cannot protect its citizens.
The report by the UN’s special rapporteur on human rights and counter-terrorism, Ben Emmerson QC, has been casting his worries on the unmanned drone attacks in his most awaited report. On another unprecedented report professor Christof Heyn which is due to be debated in the UN General Assembly on the 25th of this month has drawn a bleak image of the use of drones on civilians, especially in Pakistan where they are most used to fight the Talibans in the Afghani-Pakistani borders and beyond.
AFD International after looking closely at the effect of the UAV on civilians and its devastating effect on the very fundamental rights of civilians and non-combatants is calling on the current administration of the United States to halt all its drone strike activities. AFD International also is joining the calls upon the United States to further clarify its position on the legal and factual issues … to declassify, to the maximum extent possible, information relevant to its lethal extraterritorial counter-terrorism operations; and to release its own data on the level of civilian casualties inflicted through the use of remotely piloted aircraft, together with information on the evaluation methodology used.
Asia& Pacific Department