The name "United Nations" was devised by United States President Franklin D. Roosevelt and was first used in the "Declaration by United Nations" of 1 January 1942, during the Second World War, when representatives of 26 nations pledged their Governments to continue fighting together against the Axis Powers. .
The representatives of 50 countries at the United Nations Conference drew up the United Nations Charter on International Organization, which met at San Francisco from 25 April to 26 June 1945. Those delegates deliberated on the basis of proposals worked out by the representatives of China, the Soviet Union, the United Kingdom and the United States at Dumbarton Oaks in August-October 1944. The representatives of the 50 countries signed the Charter on 26 June 1945. Poland, which was not represented at the Conference, signed it later and became one of the original 51 Member States.
The United Nations officially came into existence on 24 October 1945, when the Charter had been ratified by China, France, the Soviet Union, the United Kingdom, and the United States and by a majority of other signatories. United Nations Day is celebrated on 24 October each year.
With the admission of Kiribati, Nauru and Tonga, there are now 188 Member States of the United Nations.
The present Secretary General is Kofi Annan. Annan was born in Kumasi, Ghana, on 8 April 1938. He studied at the University of Science and Technology in Kumasi and completed his undergraduate work in economics at Macalester College in St. Paul, Minnesota, U.S.A., in 1961. From 1961 to 1962, he undertook graduate studies in economics at the Institut universitaire des hautes études internationales in Geneva. As a 1971-1972 Sloan Fellow at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Mr. Annan received a Master of Science degree in management. .
Ongoing UN operations.
Following are some of the on going UN missions in different countries;.