The United Nations is an international organization founded in 1945 after the Second World War by 51 countries committed to maintaining international peace and security, developing friendly relations among nations and promoting social progress, better living standards and human rights. Due to its unique international character, and the powers vested in its founding Charter, the Organization can take action on a wide range of issues, and provide a forum for its 192 Member States to express their views, through the General Assembly, the Security Council, the Economic and Social Council and other bodies and committees.
The United Nations is composed of five main bodies: The General Assembly, the Security Council, the Economic and Social Council, the International Court of Justice and the Secretariat. They all seat at the UN, New York, with the exception of the International Court of Justice located at The Hague, in the Netherlands.
Connected with UNO there are several specialized bodies that work in numerous areas such like health, agriculture, civil aviation, climate and labour. These specialized bodies, together with the United Nations and other programmes and funds (such as UNICEF, United Nations Children’s Fund) are part of the United Nations system.
UNO has as main purposes/main activities:
· To maintain international peace and security;
· To develop friendly relations among nations;
· To encourage international cooperation to solve economic, social, cultural and humanitarian world problems, by promoting the respect for human rights and fundamental freedoms;
· To be the main centre designed to harmonize peoples’ action in order to achieve common goals.
Today, UNO involves 192 Member-States. Only the States may be full members and participate in the General Assembly. Other inter-governmental and other legally recognised entities may participate, as observers, with the right to take part but with no voting rights.