The United Nations (UN) is an intergovernmental organization established on 24 October 1945 to promote international cooperation. It was founded to replace the League of Nations following World War II and to prevent another conflict. When it was founded, the UN had 51 Member States; there are now 193. Most nations are members of the UN and send diplomats to the headquarters to hold meetings and make decisions about global issues.
|Headquarters||New York City (International territory)|
|Membership||193 member states
2 observer states
|Amina J. Mohammed|
• UN Charter signed
|26 June 1945|
• Charter entered into force
|24 October 1945|
The goals of the United Nations are:
- to keep world peace
- to help countries get along
- to improve living conditions for people all over the world
- and to make the world a better place.
After World War I, the nations of the world formed the League of Nations. This organization was a place where nations could talk through their differences calmly. However, some countries like Germany, Italy and Japan ignored the League and tried to solve their problems through war. Members of the League of Nations did not want to go to war to protect other members and the League failed. A Second World War soon followed.
During World War II, the Allied Powers often called themselves "the United Nations" (united against the Axis Powers). After the War, the winners formed a new organization for world peace. On 25th April 1945 in San Francisco, they decided on the name '"United Nations". In June they signed the United Nations Charter saying how the organization would work. The UN was created on 24 October 1945 and its first meeting was held in January 1946. Since 1947 the 24th of October has been called “United Nations Day”.
The main building for the United Nations is in New York City in the United States of America, but the UN also has important offices in Geneva (Switzerland), Nairobi (Kenya) and Vienna (Austria). The UN tries to be peaceful, but sometimes when talks do not work the UN, unlike the League of Nations, will fight too. In the 1950s the UN helped South Korea in a war against North Korea, and in the 1990s the UN helped to force Iraqi soldiers out of Kuwait. At other times, the UN has formed 'peacekeeping' forces. UN peacekeepers travel to troubled places in the world and try - sometimes successfully, sometimes not - to keep the peace. Today there are UN peacekeepers working in Afghanistan, Cyprus, Haiti, Liberia and several other countries. Through a series of goals, resolutions and declarations adopted by member nations of the United Nations, the world has a set of commitments, actions and goals to stop and reverse the spread of HIV and scale up towards universal access to HIV prevention, treatment, care and support services.
The United Nations has set up six "principal organs":
|UN General Assembly
- Deliberative assembly of all U.N. member states (each country has one vote) -
- Administrative organ of the U.N. - its chairman is the UN Secretary General -
|International Court of Justice
- Universal court for international law (based in The Hague) -
|U.N. Security Council
- For international security issues -
|U.N. Economic and Social Council
- For global economical and social affairs -
|U.N. Trusteeship Council
- Was administering trust territories (currently not active) -
Additionally there are so-called "special agencies of the United Nations". Some are older than the United Nations. Here are a few of them:
- The United Nations Children's Fund (UNICEF)
- The World Health Organization (WHO)
- The Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO)
- The United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO)
- The International Labour Organization (ILO)
- The International Monetary Fund (IMF)
- The United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP)
- The United Nations Development Programme (UNDP)
- "The World Today" (PDF). Retrieved 18 June 2009.
The designations employed and the presentation of material on this map do not imply the expression of any opinion whatsoever on the part of the Secretariat of the United Nations concerning the legal status of any country
- Official Languages, United Nations. Retrieved 22 May 2015.
- "Introduction to the United Nations". United Nations. 2011 [last update]. Retrieved April 7, 2011. Check date values in:
- Charter of the United Nations - Chapter III (Organs)
- This map does not represent the view of its members or the UN concerning the legal status of any country, nor does it accurately reflect which areas' governments have UN representation. This map shows partially recognized states such as Kosovo or Taiwan as part of their claiming governments (Serbia and China respectively)