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Main Bodies

Quick Facts

General Assembly

The General Assembly is the main deliberative organ of the UN and is composed of representatives of all Member States. The work of the United Nations year-round derives largely from the mandates given by the General Assembly.  A revitalization of the Assembly is under way to enhance its role, authority, effectiveness and efficiency.

General Assembly Subsidiary Bodies

Economic and Social Council

The Economic and Social Council (ECOSOC), established by the UN Charter, is the principal organ to coordinate the economic, social and related work of the United Nations and the specialized agencies and institutions.  Voting in the Council is by simple majority; each member has one vote.

ECOSOC Subsidiary Bodies

International Court of Justice

The International Court of Justice, located at the Hague in the Netherlands, is the principal judicial organ of the United Nations.  It settles legal disputes between states and gives advisory opinions to the UN and its specialized agencies.  Its Statute is an integral part of the United Nations Charter.

Security Council

The Security Council has primary responsibility, under the UN Charter, for the maintenance of international peace and security.  A reform of the Security Council, including its membership is under consideration.

Security Council Subsidiary Bodies

Trusteeship Council

The Trusteeship Council was established in 1945 by the UN Charter to provide international supervision for 11 Trust Territories placed under the administration of 7 Member States, and ensure that adequate steps were taken to prepare the Territories for self-government and independence. By 1994, all Trust Territories had attained self-government or independence. Its work completed, the Council has amended its rules of procedure to meet as and where occasion may require.

Secretariat

The Secretariat carries out the day-to-day work of the Organization.  It services the other principal organs and carries out tasks as varied as the issues dealt with by the UN: administering peacekeeping operations, surveying economic and social trends, preparing studies on human rights, among others.

Repertory of Practice of United Nations Organs

The Repertory of Practice of United Nations Organs is a legal publication containing analytical studies of the decisions of the principal organs of the United Nations.  It is a comprehensive summary of the decisions of United Nations Organs and serves to throw light on questions of application and interpretation of the UN Charter in practice.