Role of the General Assembly
All UN Member States are represented in the General Assembly — a parliament of nations which meets to consider the world's most pressing problems. Each Member State has one vote. Decisions on such key issues as international peace and security, admitting new members and the UN budget are decided by two-thirds majority. Other matters are decided by simple majority. In recent years, a special effort has been made to reach decisions through consensus, rather than by taking a formal vote.
At its 2001/2002 session, the Assembly is considering more than 180 different topics, including globalization, AIDS, conflict in Africa, protection of the environment and consolidation of new democracies. The Assembly cannot force action by any State, but its recommendations are an important indication of world opinion and represent the moral authority of the community of nations.
The Assembly holds its annual regular session from September to December. When necessary, it may resume its session or hold a special or emergency session on subjects of particular concern. When the Assembly is not meeting, its work is carried out by its six main committees, other subsidiary bodies and the UN Secretariat.
(Source The UN in brief)