• About the UN

    Aerial view of UN Headquarters in New York City.

    Overview

    The United Nations is an international organization founded in 1945.? It is currently made up of 193 Member States.? The mission and work of the United Nations are guided by the purposes and principles contained in its?founding Charter.

    Flags of the Members States outside the United Nations Secretariat building

    Member States

    Each of the 193 Member States of the United Nations is a member of the General Assembly.? States are admitted to membership in the UN by a decision of the General Assembly upon the recommendation of the Security Council.

    Wide view of the UN General Assembly Hall

    Main Organs

    The main organs of the UN are the General Assembly, the Security Council, the Economic and Social Council, the Trusteeship Council, the International Court of Justice, and the UN Secretariat.? All were established in 1945 when the UN was founded.?

    Secretary-General António Guterres briefing correspondents

    Leadership

    The Secretary-General of the United Nations is a symbol of the Organization's ideals and a spokesman for the interests of the world's peoples, in particular the poor and vulnerable. The current Secretary-General of the UN, and the ninth occupant of the post, is Mr. António Guterres of Portugal, who took office on 1 January 2017. The UN Charter describes the Secretary-General as "chief administrative officer" of the Organization.

    Secretariat

    Secretariat

    The Secretariat, one of the main organs of the UN, is organized along departmental lines, with each department or office having a distinct area of action and responsibility. Offices and departments coordinate with each other to ensure cohesion as they carry out the day to day work of the Organization in offices and duty stations around the world.? At the head of the United Nations Secretariat is the Secretary-General.

    UNDP subsidized school fees and building repairs in Chin State, Myanmar

    Funds, Programmes, Specialized Agencies and Others

    The UN system, also known unofficially as the 'UN family', is made up of the UN itself and many programmes, funds, and specialized agencies, all with their own leadership and budget.? The programmes and funds are financed through voluntary rather than assessed contributions. The Specialized Agencies are independent international organizations funded by both voluntary and assessed contributions.

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