Pope Francis Calls for Ban on  AI Weapons at G7 Summit

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Pope Francis Calls for Ban on AI Weapons at G7 Summit

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Brindisi (AsiaNews) – Pope Francis addressed the G7 summit in Italy, urging a ban on “lethal autonomous weapons” based on artificial intelligence (AI). Describing AI as an “exciting and fearsome tool,” he emphasized that political leaders face crucial decisions about its future use.

Following his speech, the Pope engaged in bilateral meetings with key political figures, including Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky. The summit, held in Borgo Egnazia, Puglia, under Italy’s rotating presidency, saw the participation of G7 members and international representatives.

Arriving from Rome by helicopter, Pope Francis joined an expanded session with leaders from the United States, Canada, Germany, France, the United Kingdom, Italy, Japan, and other nations. He met with US President Joe Biden, French President Emmanuel Macron, Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau, and others, discussing the ethical use of AI.

A notable moment was the warm embrace between Pope Francis and Prime Minister Modi, marking their second meeting since October 2021. Modi later tweeted his admiration for the Pope’s commitment to improving the planet, reiterating his invitation for the Pope to visit India.

This historic participation of a Pope in a G7 session highlighted AI’s dual nature. While AI offers advancements in knowledge and scientific research, Pope Francis warned it could exacerbate inequalities and promote a “throwaway culture.” He stressed the importance of human control over AI to preserve human dignity and called for political action to regulate its use.

Pope Francis argued that banning autonomous weapons is essential, as no machine should have the power to take a human life. He also warned against AI in judicial decisions, which could perpetuate biases, and criticized generative AI for potentially legitimizing fake news and undermining education.

In his address, the Pope advocated for ethical guidelines, or “algor-ethics,” to govern AI, emphasizing the need for political leaders to ensure AI’s positive and fair use for the common good. (asianews.it/news-en/G7)