Why African countries must regulate drone industry
Drones have for some time been used by regular armed forces on Africa’s battlefields, such as in Ethiopia and Mali. But now they are increasingly being deployed by terrorists – sparking a global sense of urgency.
At the end of October, the United Nations (UN) Security Council Counter-Terrorism Committee will host a special meeting in India on countering the use of new technologies for terrorism. Drones or unmanned aerial systems (UAS) have been identified as one of the key terrorist threats by the meeting’s organisers. Other risks are disinformation, the misuse of social media, and new payment technologies used by violent extremists.
Drones are by and large a force for good, for example in delivering medicines to hard-to-reach parts of Africa. But their widespread availability, increased range and growing sophistication in terms of payload (what they can carry) have seen an expansion in their applications.
The hobbyist drone market has grown rapidly, with global…