UN adopts India-backed AI safe use resolution

UN adopts India-backed AI safe use resolution
Courtesy: X/@UN_PGA

The UN General Assembly has unanimously adopted a landmark resolution on the promotion of "safe, secure and trustworthy" artificial intelligence (AI) systems that will also benefit sustainable development for all.

The nonbinding resolution proposed by the US and co-sponsored by India among 120 member countries was adopted by consensus without a vote on Thursday.

This is the first time that the Assembly has adopted a resolution on regulating the emerging field of artificial intelligence, the UN said in a statement.

US Vice President Kamala Harris termed it as a "historic step toward establishing clear international norms for AI and for fostering safe, secure, and trustworthy AI systems."

The Assembly called on all Member States and stakeholders "to refrain from or cease the use of artificial intelligence systems that are impossible to operate in compliance with international human rights law or that pose undue risks to the enjoyment of human rights."

"The same rights that people have offline must also be protected online, including throughout the life cycle of artificial intelligence systems," it affirmed.

The Assembly also urged all States, the private sector, civil society, research organisations and the media, to develop and support regulatory and governance approaches and frameworks related to safe, secure and trustworthy use of AI.

The UNGA further recognised the "varying levels" of technological development between and within countries, and that developing nations face unique challenges in keeping up with the rapid pace of innovation.

It urged Member States and stakeholders to cooperate with and support developing countries so they can benefit from inclusive and equitable access, close the digital divide, and increase digital literacy.

Meanwhile, Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi addressing 'Startup Mahakumbh' event on March 20 said that in the new era connected with AI technology, the world acknowledges that India will have an upper hand in AI and it should become a priority to ensure that it should not let go of the opportunity.

PM Modi said that AI has brought countless new opportunities for young investors in India and global investors alike. The National Quantum Mission, India AI Mission, and Semiconductor Mission; all these campaigns will open new doors of possibilities for the youth of India, he said.

The PM also recalled his address to the US Congress in which he talked about AI.

In December 2023, PM Modi inaugurated the Global Partnership on Artificial Intelligence (GPAI) Summit at Bharat Mandapam in Delhi, where he informed about the recently launched AI agriculture chatbot which will help farmers in various aspects of farming. The Prime Minister also expounded on the use of AI in the fields of healthcare and Sustainable Development Goals.

GPAI is a multi-stakeholder initiative with 29 member countries aiming to bridge the gap between theory and practice on AI by supporting cutting-edge research and applied activities on AI-related priorities. India is the lead chair of GPAI in 2024.


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