The United Nations was founded in 1945 after World War II to replace the League of Nations. It is an international organization whose stated aims are facilitating cooperation in international law, international security, economic development, social progress, human rights, and achievement of world peace. The philosophy behind its establishment is to stop wars between countries, and to provide a platform for dialogue. The members of the UN consist of 193 member states, including every internationally recognized sovereign state in the world but Vatican City. The UN is headed by a Secretary-General.
The organization has six principal organs:
- the General Assembly (the main deliberative assembly);
- the Security Council (for deciding certain resolutions for peace and security);
- the Economic and Social Council (for assisting in promoting international economic and social cooperation and development);
- the Secretariat (for providing studies, information, and facilities needed by the UN);
- the International Court of Justice (the primary judicial organ);
- and the United Nations Trusteeship Council (which is currently inactive).
The United Nations Headquarters resides in international territory in New York City, with further main offices at Geneva, Nairobi, and Vienna. The organization is financed from assessed and voluntary contributions from its member states, and has six official languages: Arabic, Chinese, English, French, Russian, and Spanish
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