An official website of the European Union. See all European Institutions
The use of force must always abide by international law, including international humanitarian law and human rights law, and this fully applies to autonomous weapons systems. States – and human beings – remain responsible and accountable for their behaviour in an armed conflict, even if it involves the use of autonomous weapons.
How governments should manage the rise of Artificial Intelligence (AI) to ensure we harness the opportunities while also addressing the threats of the digital era is one of the major strands of open debate the EU has initiated together with tech leaders.
Six EU military missions and operations are currently active in Europe's wider neighbourhood to support peace and security under the Common Security and Defence Policy (CSDP). These military missions and, more generally, recent progress on EU defence matters have often been in the forefront of public discussion. However, addressing complex security challenges in fragile partner countries also requires substantial civilian support and the EU has indeed currently ten civilian missions operating in the field.
Closer EU defence cooperation necessitates that Member States' Armed Forces are able to move within the Union. However, time consuming border formalities and inadequate infrastructure pose serious obstacles. For a more effective EU defence, it is crucial to overcome these hurdles. A comprehensive EU action programme launched in spring 2018 aims to achieve this.