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Pope to attend AI session of G7 summit in June

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Pope Francis will attend a working session on artificial intelligence at the G7 summit in southern Italy in June, Italian Prime Minister Giorgia Meloni said Friday.

“This is the first time in history that a pontiff will participate in the work of a G7,” she said, adding that Francis would attend the “outreach session” for guest participants at the Group of Seven industrialised nations meeting in Puglia.

Francis, 87, has sought to influence the expansion of artificial intelligence, calling for a global treaty to ensure the technology is used in an ethical way.

Meloni said it was “crucial to harness the best ethical and intellectual reflections being developed in this field” and praised the Vatican’s research into the “practical application of the concept of algorethics, i.e. giving ethics to algorithms”.

Francis’s presence would “make a decisive contribution to defining a regulatory, ethical and cultural framework for artificial intelligence”, she said.

Concerns about AI have increased since the chatbot ChatGPT, a mass-market gateway to generative AI, exploded onto the scene in late 2022.

The pope published a six-page message in December warning of the dangers of AI including in disinformation and interference in elections, and also to make decisions — from social security payments to where to target weapons — for which responsibility becomes blurred.

He called for a “binding international treaty” to regulate the development and use of AI, to prevent harm and share good practices.

“Our commitment is to develop governance mechanisms to ensure that artificial intelligence is both human-centred and human-controlled,” Meloni said.

The G7 summit, which brings together the leaders of Canada, France, Germany, Italy, Japan, the UK and the United States, will be held in Borgo Egnazia in Puglia from June 13 to 15.


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Agence France-Presse (AFP) is a French international news agency headquartered in Paris, France. Founded in 1835 as Havas, it is the world's oldest news agency.

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