International Relations: United Nations Organisation-Structure

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Organs of UNO

Organs of UNO

General Assembly

General Assembly

Security Council

  • The Security Council has primary responsibility, under the UN Charter, for the maintenance of international peace and security.
  • It has 15 Members. Each Member has one vote. Under the Charter, all Member States are obligated to comply with Council decisions.
  • The Security Council takes the lead in determining the existence of a threat to the peace or act of aggression. It calls upon the parties to a dispute to settle it by peaceful means and recommends methods of adjustment or terms of settlement.
  • In some cases, the Security Council can resort to imposing sanctions or even authorize the use of force to maintain. The Security Council has a Presidency, which rotates, and changes, every month.

Economic and Social Council

  • The Economic and Social Council is the principal body for coordination, policy review, policy dialogue and recommendations on economic, social and environmental issues, as well as implementation of internationally agreed development goals.
  • It serves as the central mechanism for activities of the UN system and its specialized agencies in the economic, social and environmental fields, supervising subsidiary and expert bodies.
  • It has 54 Members, elected by the General Assembly for overlapping three-year terms. It is the United Nations՚ central platform for reflection, debate, and innovative thinking on sustainable development.

Trusteeship Council

  • The Trusteeship Council was established in 1945 by the UN Charter, under Chapter XIII, to provide international supervision for 11 Trust Territories that had been placed under the administration of seven 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.
  • The Trusteeship Council suspended operation on 1 November 1994. By a resolution adopted on 25 May 1994, the Council amended its rules of procedure to drop the obligation to meet annually and agreed to meet as occasion required -- by its decision or the decision of its President, or at the request of a majority of its members or the General Assembly or the Security Council.

International Court of Justice

The International Court of Justice is the principal judicial organ of the United Nations. Its seat is at the Peace Palace in the Hague (Netherlands) . It is the only one of the six principal organs of the United Nations not located in New York. The Court՚s role is to settle, in accordance with international law, legal disputes submitted to it by States and to give advisory opinions on legal questions referred to it by authorized United Nations organs and specialized agencies.


  • The Secretariat comprises the Secretary-General and tens of thousands of international UN staff members who carry out the day-to-day work of the UN as mandated by the General Assembly and the Organization՚s other principal organs.
  • The Secretary-General is chief administrative officer of the Organization, appointed by the General Assembly on the recommendation of the Security Council for a five-year, renewable term.
  • UN staff members are recruited internationally and locally, and work in duty stations and on peacekeeping missions all around the world.
  • But serving the cause of peace in a violent world is a dangerous occupation. Since the founding of the United Nations, hundreds of brave men and women have given their lives in its service.


1. Which articles of the UN deals with power and functions of ECOSOC?

  1. 50 - 55
  2. 60 - 65
  3. 62 - 66
  4. 67 - 70

Ans. C

Explanation: Article 62 - 66 of the UN deals with power and functions of ECOSOC. Article 62 The Economic and Social Council may make or initiate studies and reports with respect to international economic, social, cultural, educational, health, and related matters and may make recommendations with respect to any such matters to the General Assembly to the Members of the United Nations, and to the specialized agencies concerned.

  • Article 63 -The Economic and Social Council may enter into agreements with any of the agencies referred to in Article 57, defining the terms on which the agency concerned shall be brought into relationship with the United Nations. Such agreements shall be subject to approval by the General Assembly.
  • Article 64- The Economic and Social Council may take appropriate steps to obtain regular reports from the specialized agencies. It may make arrangements with the Members of the United Nations and with the specialized agencies to obtain reports on the steps taken to give effect to its own recommendations and to recommendations on matters falling within its competence made by the General Assembly.
  • Article 65- The Economic and Social Council may furnish information to the Security Council and shall assist the Security Council upon its request.
  • Article 66- The Economic and Social Council shall perform such functions as fall within its competence in connection with the carrying out of the recommendations of the General Assembly.

2. The prescribed term for Secretary General of is of how many years?

a. 2 years

b. 3 years

c. 4 years

d. 5 years

Ans. D

Explanation: charter is silent about the term of the office. Initially a term of 3 years was prescribed for it but later it was felt that the term was too short and so in January 1946 General Assembly decided rules for it and it was made a term of 5 years.

3. What is the tenure of judges of ICJ?

  1. 6 years
  2. 7 years
  3. 8 years
  4. 9 years

Ans. D

Explanation: The ICJ comprises a panel of 15 judges elected by the General Assembly and Security Council for nine-year terms. The International Court of Justice, which has its seat in The Hague, is the principal judicial organ of the United Nations.

4. Arrange chronologically-

a. Ban Ki-moon

b. Kofi Annan

c. Antonio Guterres

d. Javier Perez de Guellar

e. Boutros Ghali


a. d, e, b, a, c b. a, b, d, e, c

c. b, d, e, c, a d. e, c, d, a, b

Ans. A

Explanation: Antonio Guterres of Portgual serves as the current Secretary-General, Ban Ki-moon (Korea) who served from January 2007 to December 2016; Kofi Annan (Ghana) who held office from January 1997 to December 2006; Boutros Boutros-Ghali (Egypt) , who held office from January 1992 to December 1996; Javier Pèrez de Cuèllar (Peru) , who served from January 1982 to December 1991;

5. The General Assembly meets ________?

  1. Every Monday of November
  2. Every year on third Tuesday of September
  3. Every year on second Friday of October
  4. Every year on third Saturday of December

Ans. B

Explanation: The General Assembly meets every year on third Tuesday of November. Its special session can be called by the secretary general at the request of security council.

#General Assembly #Security Council #International Court of Justice #Trusteeship Council #Secretary-General #Economic and Social Council