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UN adopts AI safety and security resolution sponsored by the US

The resolution was backed by all member states to set global AI guidelines.

a symbol of the United Nations

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The United Nations General Assembly (UNGA) has adopted a global artificial intelligence (AI) resolution on March 21, aiming to promote “safe, secure, and trustworthy” AI development while ensuring it does not threaten human rights.

The eight-page document, co-sponsored by over 120 countries, was adopted without a vote, representing unanimous support among all 193 UN member states. The resolution calls for member states and stakeholders to refrain from deploying AI in ways that are inconsistent with international human rights laws.

The UNGA acknowledged the varying technological advancements across countries and called for efforts to bridge this development gap. The resolution also encourages governments to develop safeguards, practices, and standards for AI development, and it calls on specialized agencies and UN-related agencies to address issues surround the technology.

“Critically, the resolution makes clear that protecting human rights and fundamental freedoms must be central to the development and use of AI systems,” said U.S. National Security Advisor Jake Sullivan in a statement.

The United States played a key role in the adoption of the resolution, serving as the primary sponsor after four months of negotiations with other countries. Vice President Kamala Harris emphasized the importance of creating and strengthening international rules on AI and other technologies, calling the resolution a “historic step toward establishing clear international norms.”

The UN’s global resolution follows other recent efforts to regulate the rapidly growing AI industry. The European Parliament voted in favor of an AI Act on March 13, which aims to set governance standards for the region. The European Commission also launched an inquiry into the use of AI by major online tech companies based on a separate Digital Services Act on March 14.

Under the Biden administration, AI and other emerging technologies such as crypto have seen both support and scrutiny. In the US, President Joe Biden signed an executive order in October 2023 that addresses various safety and security issues related to development and use. The administration also went on to approve an inquiry into Bitcoin mining, citing its India also introduced requirements related to AI in March ahead of the country’s national elections.

Note: This article was produced with the assistance of AI. The editor has extensively revised the content to adhere to journalism standards for objectivity and neutrality.

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