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United Nations

United Nations (UN), international organization of the independent states founded after World War II, with the declared goals of promoting peace and international cooperation. It was launched at the 1945 San Francisco Conference prepared by the “Big Three” Allied Powers of World War II (the United States, Britain, and the USSR), and 51 states signed the charter. Membership had grown to 160 by 1989. The headquarters are in New York City. The UN has six major organs. The General Assembly, composed of delegates from all member states, meets once a year and provides a general forum but has little actual power. The Security Council has five permanent members, (China, France, Great Britain, the United States, and the USSR), each of which has the right to veto any resoltion, and ten rotating members. The Economic and Social Council, with 54 elected members, deals with “nonpolitical” matters, coordinating the work of the specialist agencies and operating commissions, such as those on children, refugees, and human rights. The Trusteeship Council is responsible for UN Trust Territories. The International Court of Justice, in The Hague, Holland, is the UN's principal organ of international law. The Secretariat is the administrative body headed by the Secretary General. Other UN institutions include the United Nations Conference on Trade and Development, the Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees, and the United Nations Children's Fund. Major specialized agencies affiliated with the UN include the Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO), General Agreement on Tariffs and Trade (GATT), International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA), International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO), International Labor Organization (ILO), International Monetary Fund (IMF), International Telecommunication Union (ITU), United Nations Educational, Scientific, and Cultural Organization (UNESCO), Universal Postal Union (UPU), World Bank (IBRD), World Health Organization (WHO), and World Meteorological Organization (WMO). Initial enthusiasm regarding the role the UN would play on a global scale, has cooled off. This as a result of experiences in Somalia and Yugoslavia, where UN forces were hindered in their work and where their safety could not be guaranteed.

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21st Century Webster's Family Encyclopedia21st Century Webster's Family Encyclopedia - United Empire Loyalists to Victor Emmanuel