Discuss the principal organs of the United Nations. (15 marks)

Discuss the principal organs of the United Nations. (15 marks)


  • Introduce with formation and role of the United Nations
  • Discuss one by one the six principal organs of the United Nations like UNGA, UNSC
  • Conclude appropriately
Model Answer :

The United Nations (UN) is an intergovernmental organisation tasked to promote and secure international co-operation and to create and maintain international order. It was founded in 1945 as a successor of the League of Nations following the aftermath of the World War II.

The UN system is based on the following six principle organs:

  1. General Assembly
  • It is the main deliberative, policymaking and representative organ of the UN, represented by all 193 Member States.
  • The annual session is held in the month of September in New York
  • The General Assembly, each year, elects a President to serve a one-year term of office.
  1. Security Council
  • It has primary responsibility for the maintenance of international peace and security.
  • It has 15 Members (5 permanent and 10 non-permanent members) having one vote.
  • Under the UN Charter, all Member States are obligated to comply with Council decisions.
  • It calls upon the parties for dispute settlement by peaceful means and recommends methods of terms of settlement.
  • In some cases, it can resort to imposing sanctions or even authorise the use of force to maintain or restore international peace and security.
  1. Economic and Social Council
  • It is the principal body for coordination, policy review, policy dialogue and recommendations on economic, social and environmental issues.
  • It has 54 Members, elected by the General Assembly for overlapping three-year terms.
  1. Trusteeship Council
  • It was established for supervision for Trust Territories.
  • By 1994, all Trust Territories had attained self-government or independence and The Council suspended its operation.
  1. International Court of Justice
  • It is the principal judicial organ of the United Nations.
  • 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 authorised United Nations organs and specialised agencies.
  1. Secretariat
  • It comprises the Secretary-General and UN staff members who carry out the day-to-day work of the UN as mandated by the UN’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.

Over the last seven decades, India have been working with the UN as an important force for international peace and development. There are some important reforms required (e.g UNSC reforms) which should be undertaken at the earliest to suit the contemporary realities of international affairs.


Subjects : International Relations