United Nations member states

From Academic Kids

The following article helps to explain the structure of the United Nations General Assembly, the universal decision-making body of the United Nations. By definition, only states can be members, so any other intergovernmental or legal entity must be an observer - allowing them to speak, but not vote in Assembly meetings. For information on observers, see United Nations General Assembly observers.


Current Members

There are currently 191 member states.

Seat of China

Main article: China and the United Nations

The Republic of China was one of the five original founders of the UN in 1945. However, at the end of the Chinese Civil War in 1949, the Kuomintang-controlled ROC government fled to Taiwan, with the Communist government of the newly declared People's Republic of China taking control of most of the country. Representatives of the Nationalist government continued to represent China at the UN, though it was often alleged that this was somewhat unfair, given the size of the ROC's jurisdiction of Taiwan (and other outlying islands) compared to the PRC's jurisdiction of mainland China. In October 1971, Resolution 2758 was passed by the General Assembly, effectively expelling the ROC from all UN organs and replacing the China seat on the Security Council with the PRC. Multiple attempts by the Republic of China to re-join the UN, no longer to represent "China" as a whole but the "twenty-three million people of Taiwan," have not made it past committee.

Observer States and Non-members

In addition to the member states discussed above, there is also a non-member observer state: the Holy See (Vatican City State), which maintains a permanent observer mission at the UN headquarters. For several years, Switzerland was also an observer, but it became a full member on September 10, 2002 after a national referendum.

Western Sahara maintains diplomatic ties with 70-some states and is a full member of the African Union as the Saharawi Arab Democratic Republic. Because it has no effective sovereignty, administering a minority of the land in the territory of Western Sahara, with a government-in-exile headquartered in the refugee camps of Tindouf, Algeria, however, it is not represented at the UN.

Some international organizations, nongovernmental organizations, or entities whose statehood/sovereignty has not been precisely defined, such as the Palestinian Authority, the International Committee of the Red Cross, and Sovereign Military Order of Malta, have a similar observer status but not as "non-member states." See United Nations General Assembly observers for more information.

Former Members

  1. Czechoslovakia was a member from October 24, 1945 until December 31, 1992. Its seat has been taken by the Czech Republic and Slovakia. There is no single successor state to Czechoslovakia, and both the Czech Republic and Slovakia had to apply for membership.
  2. East Germany was originally admitted as the "German Democratic Republic" on September 18, 1973. After the reunification of Germany, its seat was taken on October 3, 1990.
  3. North Yemen (the Yemen Arab Republic) was admitted on September 30, 1947, under the name "North Yemen." Starting May 22, 1992, it also represented South Yemen (the People's Democratic Republic of Yemen).
  4. South Yemen (the People's Democratic Republic of Yemen) was admitted on 14 December 1967. Starting May 22, 1992, its seat was taken by Yemen.
  5. Tanganikya was a member from December 14, 1961 until April 26, 1964, when its seat was taken by Tanzania.
  6. The United Arab Republic was a member from February 21, 1958 through September 2, 1971, when Egypt changed its long-form name to the "Arab Republic of Egypt."
  7. The Union of Soviet Socialist Republics was a member from October 24, 1945 through December 23, 1991. Its seat was taken by Russia on December 24, 1991. Belarus and Ukraine had prior membership. Estonia, Latvia, and Lithuania were admitted September 17, 1991. Armenia, Azerbaijan, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Moldova, Tajikistan, Turkmenistan, and Uzbekistan were admitted March 2, 1992. Georgia was admitted July 31, 1992.
  8. West Germany was originally admitted as the "Federal Republic of Germany" on September 18, 1973. After the reunification of Germany, its seat was taken on October 3, 1990.
  9. Yugoslavia (the Socialist Federal Republic of Yugoslavia) was a member from October 19, 1945 through November 10, 2000. Its seat was taken by Serbia and Montenegro. Bosnia and Herzegovina was admitted by General Assembly Resolution A/RES/46/237 on May 22, 1992. Croatia was admitted by General Assembly Resolution A/RES/46/238 on May 22, 1992. Macedonia was admitted by General Assembly Resolution A/RES/47/225 on April 8, 1993, with this provision "pending settlement over the difference that had arisen over its name." Slovenia was admitted by General Assembly Resolution A/RES/46/238 on May 22, 1992.
  10. Zanzibar was a member from December 16, 1963 until April 26, 1964, when its seat was taken by Tanzania.

Naming Conventions and Notes

  1. Belarus was originally admitted as the "Byelorussian Soviet Socialist Republic" on October 24, 1945. It informed the United Nations of the change on September 19, 1991.
  2. Brunei takes its seat under the name "Brunei Darussalam."
  3. The Democratic Republic of the Congo was originally admitted as "Zaire" on September 20, 1960. It changed its name on May 17, 1997.
  4. The Republic of the Congo takes its seat under the name "Congo."
  5. Cyprus as an entire island is represented by the Republic of Cyprus, including the area administered by the Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus.
  6. Indonesia was admitted on September 28, 1950 and temporarily withdrew from January 20, 1965 through September 27, 1966 (inclusive), due to the upheaval of Sukarno by Suharto's coup, and the annexation of West Papua. It announced its intention to rejoin on September 19, 1966.
  7. Iran takes its seat under the name the "Islamic Republic of Iran."
  8. Ireland takes its seat under the name the "Republic of Ireland."
  9. Laos takes its seat under the name the "Lao People's Democratic Republic."
  10. Libya takes its seat under the name "Libyan Arab Jamahiriya."
  11. Macedonia takes its seat under the name the "Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia," due to pressure from Greece.
  12. Malaysia was originally admitted as the "Federation of Malaya" on September 17, 1957.
  13. Micronesia takes its seat under the name "Federated States of Micronesia."
  14. Moldova takes its seat under the name the "Republic of Moldova."
  15. Myanmar was originally admitted as "Burma" on April 19, 1948.
  16. The Netherlands takes its seat as the "Kingdom of the Netherlands."
  17. Russia takes its seat as the "Russian Federation."
  18. Syria takes its seat as the "Syrian Arab Republic."
  19. Tanzania takes its seat under the name the "United Republic of Tanzania."
  20. Ukraine was originally admitted as the "Ukrainian Soviet Socialist Republic" on October 24 1945.
  21. United Kingdom takes its seat under the name the "United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland."
  22. United States takes its seat under the name the "United States of America."

External Links

de:Mitgliedstaaten der Vereinten Nationen fr:Liste des tats membres de l'ONU it:Lista degli stati membri delle Nazioni Unite no:FNs medlemsland sq:Lista e shteteve sk:Členské štáty OSN fi:Yhdistyneiden kansakuntien jsenvaltiot ta:ஐக்கிய நாடுகள் சபை உறுப்பு நாடுகள் zh:联合国成员国列表


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