General Assembly First
The Situation in Afghanistan; The Proliferation of Drone Technology
The Situation in Afghanistan
In late August 2021, the United States completed its complete withdrawal of troops from Afghanistan after a 20-year occupation, and consequently, the Taliban retook the country concerningly quickly. While there are no more U.S. troops in the nation, there have been nearly 111,000 civilian casualties since 2009, and nearly $104.5 billion of U.S. foreign aid has been dispersed. The Taliban has made pledges to uphold human rights, yet these pledges have not been upheld. Women are being excluded from school, and public life, more than 250 news services have shut down, and the United Nations has received reports of reprisal killings.
The General Assembly must take immediate steps to address the humanitarian crisis in Afghanistan and the worsening conflict status.
The Proliferation of Drone Technology
The proliferation of military drones around the world is accelerating at an alarming rate. Increased usage of drones or Uninhabited Aerial Vehicles (UAVs) or Remotely Piloted Aircraft (RPA) raises several international security concerns. Military drones have expanded their use as the technology has developed; drones can infiltrate another state’s territory and gather intelligence and perform strikes without military personnel on the ground. Drone proliferation has benefits, such as eliminating risks to military personnel and delivering emergency supplies, medical equipment, and food to conflict zones with ease. However, there is a concern regarding the lack of regulation and civilian casualties involved in drone strikes that contribute to the fear that states will excessively use drone technology.
Currently, several states are in possession of surveillance drones, but only the United States, the United Kingdom, and Israel have used weaponized drones. The United States is a lead actor in possessing and using armed drones; since 2002, the United States has performed hundreds of drones strikes in areas of conflict instability such as Pakistan, Afghanistan, and Yemen. While resolutions have been passed that deal with protecting violations of state sovereignty, there is currently no United Nations resolution that deals with UAVs/RPAs directly. This committee must seek methods of regulation and oversight regarding drone technology. Mechanisms to increase transparency should also be considered since civilian lives have been caught in military drone usage.
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