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Some of the world’s leading robotics and artificial intelligence pioneers are calling on the United Nations to ban the development and use of killer robots.

Tesla’s Elon Musk and Google’s Mustafa Suleyman are leading a group of 116 specialists from across 26 countries who are calling for the ban on autonomous weapons.

The UN recently voted to begin formal discussions on such weapons which include drones, tanks and automated machine guns.

Ahead of this, the group of founders of AI and robotics companies have sent an open letter to the UN calling for it to prevent the arms race that is currently under way for killer robots.

In their letter, the founders warn the review conference of the convention on conventional weapons that this arms race threatens to usher in the “third revolution in warfare” after gunpowder and nuclear arms.

The founders wrote: “Once developed, lethal autonomous weapons will permit armed conflict to be fought at a scale greater than ever, and at timescales faster than humans can comprehend. theguardian.com
Japan on Saturday launched the third satellite in its effort to build a homegrown geolocation system aimed at improving the accuracy of car navigation systems and smartphone maps to mere centimetres.

An H-IIA rocket blasted off at about 2:30 pm (0530 GMT) from the Tanegashima space centre in southern Japan, according to the Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency (JAXA).

The rocket successfully released the "Michibiki" No.3 satellite about 30 minutes after launching.

Satellite geolocation systems, initially designed for the US military, now power countless civilian applications, from car navigation to internet browsing on mobile phones.

Japan relies on the US-operated Global Positioning System (GPS).

Saturday's launch was part of a broader plan to build a domestic version with four satellites focusing on the country and wider region. yahoo.com
A suspected Rwandan 1994 genocide mastermind Jean Twagiramungu has been extradited from Germany on Friday and handed over to Rwandan authorities for prosecution.

He was arrested two years ago in Frankfurt and has since battled extradition in courts which finally proved unsuccessful.

Twagiramungu is the first genocide suspect extradited from Germany.

In November 2016, two suspects – Jean-Claude Iyamuremye and Jean-Baptiste Mugimba – living in the Netherlands were extradited after several judicial proceedings to try them in the Hague.

They lost their case at the Hague Court of Appeal and were extradited per the request of Rwandan authorities.

The two suspects lived in the Netherlands with their wives and children after the genocide in 1994 which saw some 800,000 people, mostly from Rwanda’s Tutsi minority, killed. africanews.com
Employees at McDonald's restaurants in Cambridge and Crayford, near London, voted overwhelmingly for a strike.

The Bakers, Food and Allied Workers Union (BFAWU) said staff wanted secure working hours and a £10 per hour wage.

A spokesman for McDonald's said the fast-food company "works hard to ensure teams are treated fairly".

"We can confirm that, following a ballot process, the BFAWU have indicated that a small number of our employees representing less than 0.01% of our workforce are intending to strike in two of our restaurants.

"As per the terms of the ballot, the dispute is solely related to our internal grievance procedures."

Rebecca Long-Bailey, shadow secretary for business, environment and industrial strategy, said: "The strike at McDonald's is motivated by working people coming together to fight for decent pay and working conditions." bbc.com
Iceland is close to becoming the first country where no-one gives birth to a child with Down's syndrome.

Pre-natal tests were introduced in the early 2000s, and the vast majority who receive a positive test have terminated their pregnancy.

While the tests are optional, all expectant mothers are informed about their availability, and up to 85 per cent choose to take it.

It’s called the Combination Test, and uses ultrasound and blood tests – as well as factoring in the mother’s age, and determines whether the foetus will have a chromosome abnormality, the most common of which results in Down's syndrome.

On average, just one or two children with Down's syndrome are born in Iceland each year, sometimes, this is as a result of an inaccurate test.

"Babies with Down's syndrome are still being born in Iceland," said Hulda Hjartardottir, head of the Prenatal Diagnosis Unit at Landspitali University Hospital, adding: "Some of them were low risk in our screening test, so we didn't find them in our screening.” independent.co.uk
China is to stop importing coal, iron, iron ore and seafood from North Korea.

The move is an implementation of UN sanctions, which were imposed in response to North Korea's two missile tests last month.

China accounts for more than 90% of North Korea's international trade.

Beijing had pledged to fully enforce the sanctions after the US accused it of not doing enough to rein in its neighbour.

The UN approved sanctions against Pyongyang earlier this month that could cost the country $1bn (£770m) a year in revenue, according to the figures provided to the Security Council by the US delegation.

Although China's coal imports from North Korea totalled $1.2bn last year, the figure will be much lower this year because China had already imposed a ban in February, experts said. bbc.com
Police in Germany are on the lookout for a thief with a massive sweet tooth.

According to reports, over 20 tons of Nutella and chocolate eggs were stolen from a refrigerated trailer in the town of Neustadt.

The sugary heist reportedly took place some time between Aug. 12 and 13 and the thief — or thieves — would have needed their own truck to carry away that much chocolate, authorities say. 

German police are looking to see if the heist may be connected to the theft of an empty tractor trailer in the town Weimar around the same time.

“It’s not even clear if they were after the sweets or after the trailer — at this point we don’t know what their motive was,” police spokesman Martin Ahlich said, per CBS affiliate KYTX. cbslocal.com
At least 23 people have been killed and more than 120 injured after a train came off the tracks in India on Saturday.

Rescuers and local people in the northern state of Uttar Pradesh worked into the night searching for survivors in the overturned and mangled carriages.

Officials have said they expect the death toll to rise.

At least eight carriages derailed at roughly 5.46pm local time, about 80 miles (130km) north of the capital New Delhi, as the train travelled towards the Hindu holy city of Haridwar, police said.

Train crashes are frequent in India, which has the world’s fourth biggest rail network.

Poor investment in the vast network and rising demand has left overcrowded trains running on creaking infrastructure. theguardian.com
According to ABC affiliate KATU, a golden retriever named Kenyon started digging a regular dog hole in his backyard earlier this month, and after days of scraping through the grass and dirt, the 18-month-old unearthed a mysterious package.

His owners figured he'd stumbled across a time capsule or something, and decided to film the grand unveiling.

To his owners' surprise the parcel Kenyon dug up wasn't a buried treasure trove of gold coins or another box of strange notes from famed author Chuck Palahniuk.

Kenyon had discovered $85,000 worth of black tar heroin buried underground, hidden in his own backyard.

After the homeowners notified the authorities, the cops identified the murky substance as more than 15 ounces of the highly addictive drug.

The police were understandably proud of Kenyon and rewarded him with a Yamhill County K9 citation ribbon, and also named him a honorary narcotics K9 for life. vice.com
A man has been charged with using a drone to smuggle more than 13 pounds of methamphetamine into the US from Mexico.

Jorge Edwin Rivera, 25,  told the US authorities that he was paid to deliver the drugs to an accomplice at a filling station in San Diego.

Rivera, who is a US citizen, admitted smuggling the drugs five or six times since March.

Border agents spotted the flying drone on August 8 and tracked it back to Rivera who was about 2,000 yards from the border.

He was found with the methamphetamine in a lunchbox and a drone was hidden in a nearby bush.

Rivera has been remanded in custody and his next hearing is scheduled for September 7. telegraph.co.uk