United Nations in History

International Organisations: ASEAN - Commonwealth - European Union - IMF - NATO - OPEC - Warsaw Pact - World Bank

Historical Events

Events 1 - 100 of 202

  • 1942-10-07 US & UK government announce establishment of United Nations

Event of interestEvent of Interest

1942-12-10 An early report the Holocaust prepared by the Polish government-in-exile, using information obtained by Witold Pilecki, is addressed to UN member states

Polish Resistance Fighter Witold Pilecki
Polish Resistance Fighter
Witold Pilecki
  • 1943-06-03 United Nations Relief & Rehabilitation Administration forms
  • 1945-02-12 SF selected for site of UN Conference
  • 1945-04-25 45 countries convene UN Conference on Intl Organization in SF

/flags/united nationsUnited Nations Charter

1945-06-26 United Nations Charter signed by 50 nations in San Francisco

  • 1945-07-06 Nicaragua becomes 1st nation to ratify the Charter of the United Nations
  • 1945-07-28 US Senate ratifies United Nations charter 89-2

Event of interestEvent of Interest

1945-08-08 President Harry Truman signs the United Nations Charter

33rd US President Harry Truman
33rd US President
Harry Truman
  • 1945-10-24 Charter of United Nations comes into effect
  • 1945-11-05 Colombia joins the United Nations.
  • 1945-11-16 Founding of UNESCO (United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization)
  • 1945-12-04 Senate approves US participation in United Nations
  • 1945-12-18 Uruguay joins the United Nations
  • 1945-12-31 Ratification of United Nations Charter completed
  • 1946-01-17 United Nations Security Council holds its 1st meeting
  • 1946-02-01 Trygve Lie, a Norwegian socialist, becomes 1st Secretary General of the United Nations
  • 1946-04-18 League of Nations dissolves (3 months after UN starts)
  • 1946-11-04 United Nations Educational, Scientific, & Cultural Organization (UNESCO) formed
  • 1946-12-03 US government asks UN to order dictator Franco out of Spain
  • 1946-12-14 UN General Assembly votes to establish UN HQs in New York City
  • 1946-12-16 Thailand joins the United Nations
  • 1947-07-08 Demolition begins for UN HQ in NYC
  • 1947-08-05 Netherlands ceases political action in Indonesia, due to UN pressure
  • 1947-11-30 Day after UN decree for Israel, Jewish settlements attacked
  • 1948-04-07 World Health Organization formed by the United Nations
  • 1948-09-14 Groundbreaking ceremony for UN world headquarters

AppointmentAppointment of Interest

1948-09-18 Ralph Bunche confirmed as acting UN mediator in Palestine

Diplomat and Nobel Laureate Ralph Bunche
Diplomat and Nobel Laureate
Ralph Bunche
  • 1949-03-04 Security Council of UN recommends membership for Israel
  • 1949-10-04 United Nations' permanent NYC headquarters is dedicated
  • 1949-10-24 Contruction begins on the United Nations headquaters in New York
  • 1950-06-27 North Korean troops reach Seoul, UN asks members to aid South Korea, Harry Truman orders US Air Force & Navy into Korean conflict
  • 1950-06-27 South Africa heeds United Nations call to assist Korea
  • 1950-07-07 Korean War: UN Security Council establishes the United Nations Command to combat North Korean forces

Event of interestEvent of Interest

1950-07-08 Gen Douglas MacArthur named commander-in-chief, UN forces in Korea

US WWII General Douglas MacArthur
US WWII General
Douglas MacArthur
  • 1950-09-01 13 North Korean divisions open assault on UN lines
  • 1950-09-15 During Korean conflict, UN forces land at Inchon in South Korea
  • 1951-10-24 United Nations publishes its first postage stamps
  • 1952-11-10 Trygve Lie resigns as 1st Secretary General of the United Nations
  • 1953-04-07 UN General Assembly begins session that will elect Dag Hammarskjöld of Sweden as Secretary-General
  • 1953-04-10 Dag Hammarskjöld becomes the 2nd Secretary-General of the United Nations
  • 1953-07-20 The United Nations Economic and Social Council votes to make UNICEF a permanent agency.
  • 1953-07-27 North Korea & UN sign armistice
  • 1953-11-17 United States joins the United Nations in condemning Israel's raid on Jordan on October 4, 1953

Event of interestEvent of Interest

1953-12-08 Dwight D. Eisenhower gives his "Atoms for Peace" speech at the United Nations in New York

34th US President & WWII General Dwight D. Eisenhower
34th US President & WWII General
Dwight D. Eisenhower
  • 1954-08-07 Charles Mahoney becomes 1st US black to serve as a full UN delegate
  • 1954-09-21 Eelco Van Kleffens appointed President of the ninth session of the UN General Assembly
  • 1955-12-14 16 countries join the United Nations, including Austria, Finland, Italy, and Spain
  • 1956-07-25 Jordan attacks UN Palestine force
  • 1956-11-02 Hungary appeals for UN assistance against Soviet invasion
  • 1957-01-23 Indian nationalist V. K. Krishna Menon begins the longest ever sppeach at the UN on Kashmir- 8 hours over 2 days

  • 1958-01-13 9,000 scientists of 43 nations petition UN for nuclear test ban
  • 1960-06-15 Argentina complains to UN about Israeli illicit transfer of Eichmann
  • 1960-07-18 1st UN troops reach Congo
  • 1960-08-06 The UN Security Council lay down rules which would allow UN forces to enter Congo

Event of interestEvent of Interest

1960-09-26 Cuban leader Fidel Castro delivers a 4 hour and 29 minute long speech at the United Nations

Cuban Revolutionary and President Fidel Castro
Cuban Revolutionary and President
Fidel Castro
  • 1960-10-01 Nigeria becomes the 99th member of the United Nations

Event of interestEvent of Interest

1960-10-12 Soviet leader Nikita Khrushchev bangs his shoe on his desk at UN General Assembly session

Soviet First Secretary Nikita Khrushchev
Soviet First Secretary
Nikita Khrushchev
  • 1960-11-14 Belgium threatens to leave UN due to criticism on its policy on Congo
  • 1960-12-18 General Meeting of UN condemns apartheid
  • 1961-09-13 Battles between UN & Katanga troops in Congo
  • 1961-11-11 Congolese soldiers murder 13 Italian UN pilots
  • 1961-11-28 General Meeting of UN debates New-Guinea
  • 1961-11-30 USSR vetoes Kuwaits application for UN membership
  • 1962-10-23 Adlai Stevenson speaks at UN about Cuba crisis
  • 1962-10-25 110th member of UN admitted (Uganda)
  • 1962-10-25 US Ambassador to the UN Adlai Stevenson demands USSR UN rep Zorin answer regarding Cuban missile bases saying "I am prepared to wait for my answer until hell freezes over"
  • 1962-11-30 U Thant of Burma becomes the 3rd Secretary-General of the United Nations
  • 1963-05-14 Kuwait is 111th member of the United Nations
  • 1963-07-18 The United Nations Special Committee on Apartheid releases its second interim report pressing for international sanctions against South Africa, particularly the supply of arms, ammunition and petroleum
  • 1964-02-12 Fighting breaks out between Turks and Greeks over dispute islands in Cyprus and 16 are killed; the UN responds the following month by sending a peacekeeping force
  • 1964-06-30 Last UN troops leave Congo

Event of interestEvent of Interest

1964-12-11 Che Guevara speaks at the United Nations General Assembly in New York City. An unknown terrorist fires a mortar shell at the building during the speech.

Argentine Revolutionary Che Guevara
Argentine Revolutionary
Che Guevara
  • 1965-09-21 Singapore admitted as part of the United Nations.
  • 1965-11-17 General Meeting of UN refuses admittance of People's Republic of China
  • 1967-06-10 Israel, Syria, Jordan, Iraq & Egypt end "6-Day War" with UN help
  • 1968-04-24 Mauritius becomes a member state of the United Nations.
  • 1969-03-29 14th Eurovision Song Contest: Salome for Spain ("Vivo cantando"), Lulu of United Kingdom ("Boom Bang-a-Bang"), Lenny Kuhr of Netherlands ("De troubadour"), and Frida Boccara of France ("Un jour, un enfant") all win in Madrid
  • 1970-02-15 Nationalists disrupt UN session on Congo
  • 1970-03-17 US casts their 1st UN Security Council veto (Support England)
  • 1970-12-05 Premiere of Dario Fo's Morte accidentale di un anarchico
  • 1971-02-26 Secretary-General U Thant signs United Nations proclamation of the vernal equinox as Earth Day.
  • 1971-04-03 16th Eurovision Song Contest: Severine for Monaco wins singing "Un banc, un arbre, une rue" in Dublin
  • 1971-08-25 Leader of the Social Democratic and Labour Party Gerry Fitt presents a number of allegations of brutality by the security forces in Northern Ireland to representatives of the United Nations
  • 1971-10-25 General Meeting of UN agrees to admit People's Republic of China
  • 1971-11-23 China People's Republic seated in UN Security Council
  • 1971-12-04 The UN Security Council calls an emergency session to consider the deteriorating situation between India and Pakistan.
  • 1973-07-21 France performs nuclear Test at Mururoa Atoll in the Pacific
  • 1974-11-12 South Africa suspended from UN General Assembly over racial policies

Event of interestEvent of Interest

1975-11-10 PLO leader Yasser Arafat addresses UN in NYC

Palestinian Leader Yasser Arafat
Palestinian Leader
Yasser Arafat
  • 1976-06-23 The U.S. vetoes Angola’s application for membership of the United Nations Security
  • 1976-07-09 Uganda asks UN to condemn Israeli hostage rescue raid on Entebbe
  • 1977-06-10 International Labour Organisation and United Nations meet to discuss apartheid in South Africa and potential actions to prevent further violence and state repression.
  • 1979-08-15 Andrew Young resigns as US ambassador to the United Nations
  • 1979-08-31 Donald McHenry named to succeed Andrew Young as US UN ambassador
  • 1980-11-20 United Nations Gulf War mediator Olof Palme makes first unsuccessful peace shuttle between Tehran and Baghdad
  • 1981-09-15 Vanuatu becomes a member of the United Nations.
  • 1981-10-27 Andrew Young, former UN Ambassador, elected mayor of Atlanta, Georgia
  • 1981-12-10 The United Nations General Assembly approves Pakistan's proposal for establishing nuclear free-zone in South Asia.
  • 1981-12-11 UN Secrity Council choses Javier Pérez de Cuélla of Peru as the 5th Secretary-General of the United Nations

Famous Birthdays

  • 1886-01-31 Alfonso Lopez, Colombia, statesman (Pres UN security council-1948)
  • 1887-02-26 Benegal Narsing Rau, India, President of UN Security Council (1950)
  • 1893-02-06 Muhammad Zafrulla Khan, President of UN General Assembly (1962-63)
  • 1896-07-16 Trygve Lie, Norwegian politician and 1st Secretary-General of the United Nations (1946-52), born in Oslo (d. 1968)
  • 1905-07-29 Dag Hammarskjöld, Swedish public servant, 2nd Secretary-General of the United Nations (1953-61) and posthumous Nobel Peace Prize winner (1961), born in Jönköping, Sweden (d. 1961)
  • 1908-05-23 Max Abramovitz, US architect (Lincoln Center, UN Building)
  • 1908-08-08 Arthur J Goldberg, Ill, UN ambassador/Supreme Court justice (1962-65)
  • 1909-01-22 U Thant, Burma, Burmese politician and 3rd Secretary-General of the United Nations (1961-72), born in Pantanaw, Myanmar
  • 1915-05-29 Lord Huntingfield, British agent to UN Secreteriat
  • 1917-01-03 Vernon A. Walters, American diplomat and US permanent rep to the UN (1989-91), born in NYC, New York (d. 2002)
  • 1918-12-21 Kurt Waldheim, Austrian 4th Secretary-General of the United Nations (1972-81) and 9th President of Austria (1986-92), born in Sankt Andrä-Wördern, Austria (d. 2007)
  • 1920-01-19 Javier Pérez de Cuéllar, Peruvian diplomat, 5th Secretary-General of the United Nations (1982-91) and Prime Minister of Peru (2000-01), born in Lima
  • 1922-11-14 Boutros Boutros-Ghali, Egyptian politician and 6th Secretary-General of the United Nations (1992- 96), born in Cairo (d. 2016)
  • 1926-11-19 Jeane J Kirkpatrick, US ambassador to UN (R), born in Duncan, Oklahoma
  • 1928-06-28 Dr Hans Blix, Swedish head of the United Nations Monitoring, Verification and Inspection Commission 2000-2003
  • 1932-03-12 Andrew Young, US ambassador to UN (1977-79)/(Mayor-D-Atlanta)
  • 1938-04-08 Kofi Annan, Ghanaian diplomat and 7th Secretary-General of the United Nations (1997-2006), born in Comassie, Gold Coast
  • 1938-04-13 John Weston, British diplomat, representative for NATO (1992-95) and UN (1995-98)
  • 1942-02-01 Muna Wassef, Wassef is a well known Syrian/Arab movie star and a United Nations Goodwill ambassador.

Person of interestPerson of Interest

1944-06-13 Ban Ki-moon, South Korean politician and 8th Secretary-General of the United Nations (2007-16), born in Injō, Japanese Korea

8th Secretary-General of the United Nations Ban Ki-moon
8th Secretary-General of the United Nations
Ban Ki-moon

Person of interestPerson of Interest

1949-04-30 António Guterres, 114th Prime Minister of Portugal (1995-2002) and 9th Secretary-General of the United Nations (2017-), born in Lisbon, Portugal

Prime Minister of Portugal and Secretary-General of the United Nations António Guterres
Prime Minister of Portugal and Secretary-General of the United Nations
António Guterres
  • 1956-03-09 Shashi Tharoor, Indian author & United Nations Under-Secretary General
  • 1960-02-23 Maria Gloria von Schoenberg-Glauchau, wife of prince Thurn un Taxis
  • 1961-07-15 Scott Ritter, UN weapons inspector in Iraq
  • 1972-01-20 Nikki Haley, American politician and diplomat, Governor South Carolina (2011-17), US UN Ambassador (2017-), born in Bamberg, South Carolina

Famous Weddings


HeartWedding of Interest

1977-06-17 Senator Joe Biden of Delaware (34) weds Jill Jacobs (26) at the Chapel at the United Nations in New York City

47th Vice President of the United States Joe Biden
47th Vice President of the United States
Joe Biden

HeartWedding of Interest

1977-10-21 Actor Peter Boyle (42) weds Loraine Alterman at the United Nations chapel in Manhattan

  • 1996-03-24 Former Atlanta mayor and UN ambassador Andrew Young (64) weds Carolyn Watson (49) in South Africa
  • 2003-06-08 "The Sopranos" actor Dominic Chianese (72) weds United Nations conference planner Jane Pittson (56) in Manhattan

Famous Deaths

  • 1948-09-17 Count Folke Bernadotte, UN mediator for Palestine, assassinated
  • 1954-11-22 Andrej J Vysjinski, Russian UN ambassador, dies at 70
  • 1958-06-26 Andrija Štampar, Croatian physician and United Nations diplomat (b. 1888)
  • 1961-09-18 Dag Hammarskjöld, Swedish public servant, 2nd Secretary-General of the United Nations (1953-61) and posthumous Nobel Peace Prize winner (1961), dies in an air crash over Congo at 56
  • 1968-12-30 Trygve Lie, Norwegian politician and 1st Secretary-General of the United Nations (1946-52), dies at 72

Person of interestPerson of Interest

1971-12-09 Ralph Bunche, American UN delegate, first person of color to win Nobel Peace Prize winner (1950), dies at 67

Diplomat and Nobel Laureate Ralph Bunche
Diplomat and Nobel Laureate
Ralph Bunche
  • 1974-11-25 U Thant, Burmese politician and 3rd Secretary-General of the United Nations (1961-72), dies in NY of cancer at 65
  • 1996-08-25 Erskine Childers, UN official/civil servant, dies at 67
  • 2001-09-05 Vladimir Žerjavić, Croatian UN statistician (b. 1912)
  • 2003-05-12 Prince Sadruddin Aga Khan, French UN High Commissioner for Refugees (b. 1933)
  • 2003-07-17 David Kelly, Welsh UN weapons inspector (b. 1944)
  • 2007-06-14 Kurt Waldheim, Austrian 4th Secretary-General of the United Nations (1972-81) and 9th President of Austria (1986-92), dies at 88
  • 2010-08-12 Guido de Marco, 6th president of Malta, 45th President of the United Nations General Assembly (b. 1931)
  • 2016-02-16 Boutros Boutros-Ghali, Egyptian politician and 6th Secretary-General of the United Nations (1992- 96), dies at 93