Brief notes on the Main Organs of the United Nations

The Principal Organs of the U.N. are:

The General Assembly, the Security Council, the Social and Economic Council, the Trusteeship, the International Court of Justice and the Secretariat.

General Assembly (GA):

The General Assembly consists of all members of U.N. each member enjoys a vote and is entitled to be represented by 5 delegates. The assembly holds its meeting annually in September, however, an early session can be held at the request of Security council.

The Assembly has its President who is elected by the member. ° U.N. The General Assembly comprise four committees: Main committee, General Committee, Credentials Committee and Sub­committee.

The Main Committee is divided among seven main committees which every member State is represented by a delegate.

These seven committees are:

Economic and Financial Committee Political and Security Committee, Trusteeship Committee, Legal Committee Administrative and Budgetary Committee, Special Political Committee Social and Cultural Committee.

The General Committee consists of twenty one members. Among these twenty-one, is the President, thirteen are Vice-Presidents and Chairmen of seven committees. The General Committee helps to co­ordinate the proceedings of General Assembly.

The Credentials Committee helps to verify the credential of the delegates. It consists of nine members.

The Sub-committee consists of Advisory Committee on administrative and budgetary matters and a committee on contribution.

Functions of General Assembly:

(a) To elect non-permanent members of the Security Council.

(b) To elect Judges of International Court of Justice.

(c) To receive and consider reports for different organs of U.N. and bring them in notice of Security Council.

(d) To appoint Secretary-General.

(e) To promote international understanding, friendship and co­operation among nations of the world.

(J) To discuss matters coming within scope of the U.N. Charter except those pending before Security Council.

Security Council (SC):

The Security Council consists of fifteen members of which five are permanent members and ten members are non- permanent. These non-permanent members are elected by two-thirds majority of the U.N… Of these ten, five are from African and Asian countries, two from Latin countries, two from Western Europe and one from Eastern Europe.

The Permanent members of the Security Council are: The United States of America, the United Kingdom, Russia, France and People’s Republic of China.

Functions: The functions of Security Council include:

(a) To maintain peace and security in world.

(b) To develop plans for regulation of armaments.

(c) To take aggressive action against any aggression.

(d) To recommend the admission of new members.

(e) To elect the judges of the International Court of Justice with General Assembly.

(f) To advise U.N. to apply economic sanctions against a country or State whose policies are a threat to world peace?

Veto in the Security Council: As stated above every major decision the Security Council requires at least 9 to 15 votes. These nine votes Janis include the positive votes of five permanent members. If any one of the five permanent members says ‘NO’ to a proposal, veto is said to have been exercised.

Economic and Social Council (ECOSOC): It consists of 54 members elected by the General Assembly, who are elected for three years. However, the President is elected for an year only. The council holds its session twice in an year. The basic goal is to free the world from fear. Functions:

(a) To foster respect for human rights.

(b) To promote and encourage co-operation among member countries or States of U.N.

(c) To help to maintain dignity of man free of all social evils.

(d) To work to establish a prosperous world order based on justice. (e) to submit draft conventions to General Assembly which are then sent to member States for implementation.

The International Court of Justice:

It is the principal judiciary of U.N… It consists of fifteen judges from fifteen different nations. These judges are elected for a term of nine years by General Assembly and Security Council. It has its headquarters in The Hague (Netherlands). It performs two major functions:

(a) Give advisory opinion on legal matters to U.N.

(b) Decide the dispute between members State with their consent. Trusteeship Council (TC): The members of Trusteeship Council are the permanent members of the Security Council and the members from the nations who administer trust territories. It holds its meeting twice in an year in addition to a special session if required.


Its functions are to help General Assembly and the Security Council in pulling off its duties with regard to trust territories.


The Secretariat consists of Secretary General and international staff appointed by him The Secretary General is appointed V General Assembly on the asking of the Security Council for five years. First Secretary General: 1946-1953 -Trygve Lie (Norway) Second Secretary General: 1953-1961-Dag Haminarskjoeld (Sweden) third Secretary General: 1962-1970-U Thant (Burma) Fourth Secretary General: 197?.-1981-Kurt Waldheim (Austria) Fifth Secretary General: 1982-1991-Javier Perez de Cuellar (Peru) Secretary General: 1992-1996-Dr. Boutros BoUtros Ghali

Seventh Secretary General:

1997-2006-Kofi Annan (Ghana), jag the Secretary General: 2007 onwards-Ban Ki-Moon (S. Korea), unctions : It acts as chief administrative officer of an organisation.

(b) It acts as Secretary Geneia in all meetings of General Assemble and Security Council and the Trusteeship Council.

(c) It brings any matter that threatens international peace in knowledge of Security Council.