Expert calls for tighter regulations on drones in UAE – News

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They have become a security threat, an academician said during a recent talk in Abu Dhabi.

Drones have been gaining popularity as those nice-to-have flying devices that hobbyists often use to capture stunning aerial shots – but when they are used in warfare, it’s an entirely different story.

They have become a security threat, an academician said during a recent talk in Abu Dhabi.

Dr James Rogers, a visiting fellow at Yale University’s department of international security studies, said the use of more advanced military drone systems have marked a shift in the ‘drone game’. “Drones are no longer used as just low-tech, slow, hobbyist devices. They are now faster, more furious and swarming. More sophisticated, high-speed, longer range, air-burst systems are being supplied,” said Rogers.

Remote warfare

“This reflects an increasing dependence on remote warfare to generate unstable conditions.”

Rogers made these comments during a session titled ‘Remote Warfare and Non-State Actors in the Middle East’, held at the Foreign Correspondents’ Club of the UAE in Abu Dhabi on Wednesday evening.

According to him, with drones being used in novel and sometimes deadly ways, a new pattern of drone warfare has emerged.

Extremist individuals and groups can infiltrate systems using drones, steal data and use it for disruptive activities or commercial purposes, Rogers said.

Strict regulations

On what should be done to counter the drones threat, he said it is now important for nations to introduce tougher regulations on the ownership and use of the drones.

“There should be strict regulations on people buying drones. Those buying dozens of drones need to be investigated for what they are using them for,” said Rogers. “Nations also need to invest more in counter-drone systems.”

Rogers is recognised as a world-leading expert on drone and remote warfare.

In addition to writing extensively on the topic, he has provided advice on the impact of this threat to multi-lateral institutions and governments, including Nato and the UK’s Ministry of Defence. 

Ismail Sebugwaawo

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