Document Type

Journal Article


New technologies under development, capable of inflicting pain on masses of people, could be used for border control against asylum seekers. Implementation might be rationalized by the threat of mass migration due to climate change, nuclear disaster or exaggerated fears of refugees created by governments. We focus on taser anti-personnel mines, suggesting both technological countermeasures and ways of making the use of such technology politically counterproductive. We also outline several other types of ‘non-lethal’ technology that could be used for border control and raise human rights concerns: high-powered microwaves, armed robots, wireless tasers, acoustic devices/vortex rings, ionizing and pulsed energy lasers, chemical calmatives, convulsants, bioregulators and malodurants. Whether all these possible border technologies will be implemented is a matter for speculation, but their serious human rights implications warrant advance scrutiny.