It’s the stuff of science fiction: machines that make decisions about who and when to kill. Referred to as “autonomous weapons”, they’re already in use to some degree. But as more sophisticated systems are being developed we wanted to an expert in the field about whether such systems comply with international humanitarian law and what it means for humanity to give machines the power over human life and death.
“What inspired me to become a teacher in the first place was to deliver a message,” says Abdullah Yahya, a teacher and principal at the Al Wahda school in Saada, Yemen. That message is about the importance of learning, no matter what the circumstances. Now, after seven years of conflict in Yemen, the importance of learning is more critical than ever.
In 2021, UNICEF estimated that the number of children out of school has doubled since the conflict started in 2015, amounting to nearly 2 million boys and girls without the opportunity to receive an education. But that has not stopped many teachers like Abdullah Yahya. “We do our duty towards these children by educating, teaching, and raising them properly in spite of our, and our country’s, current situation”.