About the United Nations

The United Nations (UN) is an international organization with 193 member states. It doesn’t represent a single nation or government – the UN represents the whole world.

Founded in 1945 after the Second World War, the UN is committed to maintaining peace and security, developing friendly relations among nations, and creating a better future for people and the planet.

The UN can take action on a wide range of issues due to its unique international character, and the powers vested in its founding Charter. The UN provides a forum for its 193 Member States to express their views through – among others – the six main organs below.

Click on the names to read more.

General Assembly

is the main deliberative, policymaking, and representative organ of the UN. All 193 member states of the UN are represented in the General Assembly, making it the only UN body with universal representation.

Security Council

has primary responsibility, under the UN Charter, for the maintenance of international peace and security. It has 15 members – 5 permanent and 10 non-permanent members.


is the principal body for coordination, policy review and dialogue, and recommendations on economic, social, and environmental issues, as well as the implementation of internationally agreed development goals.

established to provide international supervision for Trust Territories placed under the administration of seven member states, and ensure that adequate steps were taken to reach self-government and independence. 

is the principal judicial organ of the United Nations. Its seat is at the Peace Palace in the Hague. It is the only one of the six principal organs of the UN not located in New York (United States of America).

comprises the Secretary-General and tens of thousands of international UN staff members who carry out the day-to-day work of the UN as mandated by the General Assembly and the organisation’s other principal organs.

The UN system consists of over 30 specialized agencies and associated organisations with different mandates, working within a broad range of fundamental issues; from sustainable development, environmental issues, and international health to refugees protection, disaster relief, counter-terrorism and promoting democracy, human rights, and gender equality, and many more.

Today, the work of the UN is divided into five areas:

Maintaining international peace and security
Protecting human rights
Delivering humanitarian aid
Promoting sustainable development
Upholding international law

If you are looking for more information about the history of the UN, its mandate, and work, we invite you to visit the main webpage here.
Find more information about the 11 UN agencies located in UN City Copenhagen here.

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