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Information about 'The United Nations'

Updated on November 6, 2014

The United Nations

The United Nations was formed at the end of the Second World War. It was an organization that aimed at keeping peace, but had more powers than the League of Nations used to have. In this article you will read about the UN in detail and will also try to understand why wars happen and what the world can do in order to prevent them.

Difference between 'Peace and Prosperity'

War happens when two armies fight against each other. They fight because they think that there is no better way of getting what they want. In history, wars have been fought for wealth, territory, revenge, ideas and beliefs. One thing common to all wars is that people get hurt and many people die. Although the fighting takes place between armies, civilians also get hurt.

All religions emphasize kindness and love. One of the meanings of Islam in Arabic is “Peace” (that is why we say that Islam is a religion of peace).

In order to establish peace, we must eliminate the causes that produce war. Most important among them are fear, greed and hypocrisy.

At the same time, we need to eliminate poverty from the world so that every human being should get a chance to live a comfortable life, receive education and contribute joyfully in the overall progress and stability of the world.

The making of the UN

On August 14, 1941, while the world was still engaged in war, American President F.D. Roosevelt met with the British Prime Minister Sir Winston Churchill aboard a warship near the coast of the US. Together, they decided that after this war had ended, everything possible must be done in order to ensure peace in the world.

Roosevelt and Churchill signed a document that contained these principles and this was called the Atlantic Charter. In the following few years, many more nations of the world signed this charter and at last an international Organization called the United Nations came into being on October 10, 1945. Its headquarters were situated in New York. Two years later. Geneva was declared the European center of the UN and some UN agencies have their headquarters there.


Organs of the UN

There are six principle Organs of the UN:

  1. General Assembly:

The General Assembly consists of all member states of the UN and meeting once every year. The decisions of the General Assembly are not limited to any one country, but they are important because they represent the majority opinion of the world.

  1. Security Council:

The Security Council is responsible for maintaining peace in the world. There are fifteen members of the Security Council, ten of whom are elected for two years, but five are permanent members. The permanent members include the US, the former USSR, Great Britain, China and France. They also have the power to ‘veto’ (or say ‘no’ to) any resolution passed by the Security Council.

  1. Economic and Social council:

This is a council established to eradicate poverty from the world and to promote economic development among the nations.

  1. World Court

This is also called the international court of justice and its headquarters are situated at Hague (Netherlands). The world court decides on disputes between nations of the world. It has 15 judges, elected by the member’s states, who decided the cases according to the International Law.

  1. Secretariat:

This is the administrative officer of the UN, and a Secretary General looks after it. The secretary general is elected for a five years term by the general assembly.

  1. Trusteeship committee:

This organ does not exist anymore it was formed in order to look after those territories that were left without a government after the Second World War. It stopped functioning after it completed its duties.


Specialized Agencies

You may have heard about UNESCO, UNICEF or the World Bank in the news. These and many others are specialized agencies of the UN.

UNICEF

This is the abbreviation of the United Nations International Children Emergency Fund. The main aim of UNICEF, as you may have guessed from its name, is to provide all types of welfare to the children of the world. Obviously, most of the focus is on children in the developing parts of the world, because they are very often without the basic health and educational facilities UNICEF works in association with the governments of these countries and involves people from all sections of the society in its’ work. UNICEF received the Noble Peace Prize in 1965

UNESCO

This is the abbreviation for the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO). Its headquarters are in parts. The main aim of UNESCO is to help the countries of the world in obtaining modern education as well as preserving their cultural Heritage. Important Heritage sites all over the world are listed as world heritage sties, Moenjo Daro, Lahore fort, and many other historical places in Pakistan are also listed as world Heritage sites.

FAO

This is the abbreviation of the Food and Agricultural Organization. It’s main purpose is to look after the food and agricultural needs of the world. Its headquarters are situated in Rome (Italy).

WHO

This is the abbreviation of the World Health Organization. Its’ headquarters are situated in Geneva (Switzerland). It provides medical help to the developing countries and suggest ways of preventing the spread of diseases.

ILO

This is the abbreviation of the International Labour Organization, and its aim is to improve work conditions of the laborers throughout the world. While the other organs and agencies of the UN only deal with the governments, the ILO deals with the workers’ organizations and employers’ organizations as well. Its headquarters are in Geneva (Switzerland). ILO received the Noble Peace Prize in 1969.

World Bank

This is the short name given to the International Bank of Reconstruction and Development. The bank offers loans to poor countries and helps in their development. The World Bank also provided money to Pakistan for building dams at Tarbela and Mangla. The headquarters of the World Bank are situated in Washington DC (U.S.A)

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