G7 Summit: Pope Francis Raises Alarm About AI

Pope Francis has made history by becoming the first pontiff to take part in a G7 summit.

He was welcomed by Italian Premier Giorgia Meloni after arriving by helicopter at the Puglia resort of Borgo Egnazia on Friday, June 14 for the

Francis replied “Still alive” when Meloni asked him how he was.

“Still alive, me too” replied the prime minister, to which the Argentine pontiff replied, “That makes two of us”.

“Happy to meet you again,” said Francis as he got off the helicopter, to which Meloni replied: “It’s a great, great pleasure to have you here.

Your presence is a great gift.” Francis is addressing a session on AI at the summit, and having 10 bilateral meetings with world leaders.

At the summit, the 87-year-old pontiff took part in a discussion of issues surrounding artificial intelligence, energy, and the Africa-Mediterranean region.

Francis said politicians must take the lead in making sure AI remains human-centric so that decisions about when to use weapons or even less-lethal tools always remain made by humans and not machines.

“We would condemn humanity to a future without hope if we took away people’s ability to make decisions about themselves and their lives, by dooming them to depend on the choices of machines,” he said. “We need to ensure and safeguard a space for proper human control over the choices made by artificial intelligence programs: Human dignity itself depends on it.”

The pope called for an international treaty to ensure AI is developed and used ethically. He argues that a technology lacking human values of compassion, mercy, morality, and forgiveness is too perilous to develop unchecked.

“No machine should ever choose to take the life of a human being,” he said.

He concluded: “It is up to everyone to make good use of (AI) but the onus is on politics to create the conditions for such good use to be possible and fruitful.”


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