United Nations in History

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

Historical Events

Events 1 - 100 of 283

  • 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 San Francisco

United NationsUnited Nations Charter

1945-06-26 United Nations Charter signed by 50 nations in San Francisco
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Preamble to the Charter of the United Nations
Preamble to the Charter of the United Nations
  • 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

United <b>Nations</b>United Nations

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, the 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
  • 1946-01-10 UN General Assembly meets for 1st time in London

  • 1946-01-17 United Nations Security Council holds its 1st meeting
  • 1946-02-01 Norwegian politician Trygve Lie becomes 1st Secretary General of the United Nations
  • 1946-04-18 League of Nations dissolves (3 months after UN starts)
  • 1946-10-23 UN General Assembly 2nd session convenes (1st NYC-Flushing Meadows)
  • 1946-11-04 United Nations Educational, Scientific, & Cultural Organization (UNESCO) formed

Event of interestEvent of Interest

1946-12-03 US government asks UN to order dictator Francisco Franco out of Spain

Spanish Dictator and General Francisco Franco
Spanish Dictator and General
Francisco Franco
  • 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
  • 1947-11-20 UN General assembly begins debate on printing their own stamps
  • 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
  • 1948-12-09 UN General Assembly unanimously approves Convention on Genocide

Event of interestEvent of Interest

1948-12-10 UN General Assembly adopts the Universal Declaration of Human Rights

  • 1949-01-28 UN Security council convicts Dutch aggression in Indonesia
  • 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 General Douglas MacArthur named commander-in-chief of 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
  • 1952-10-14 UN General Assembly first meets at its new headquarters in New York
  • 1952-11-10 Trygve Lie resigns as 1st Secretary General of the United Nations
  • 1953-03-31 UN Security Council nominates Dag Hammarskjöld for Secretary-General
  • 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

Agreement of InterestKorean War Ends

1953-07-27 North Korea and the United Nations sign armistice to stop fighting and divide Korea at the 38th parallel
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Signing of the armistice which ended the active fighting phase of the Korean War
Signing of the armistice which ended the active fighting phase of the Korean War
  • 1953-11-17 United States joins the United Nations in condemning Israel's raid on Jordan on October 4, 1953

United Nations <b>Speech</b>United Nations Speech

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

United <b>Nations</b>United Nations

1956-11-07 Suez Crisis ends with a ceasefire as the United Nations Emergency Force is established at instigation of Canadian diplomat Lester B. Pearson and UN Secretary-General Dag Hammarskjöld

Prime Minister of Canada Lester B. Pearson
Prime Minister of Canada
Lester B. Pearson
  • 1957-01-23 Indian nationalist V. K. Krishna Menon begins the longest ever speech defending India's stand on Kashmir at the UN - 8 hours over 2 days
  • 1958-01-13 9,000 scientists of 43 nations petition UN for nuclear test ban
  • 1958-06-11 UN Security council sends observers to Lebanon

Execution'The Banality of Evil'

1960-06-15 Argentina complains to UN about Israeli illicit transfer of Eichmann
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Nazi war criminal Adolf Eichmann sits in the dock at his 1961 trial in Jerusalem
Nazi war criminal Adolf Eichmann sits in the dock at his 1961 trial in Jerusalem
  • 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
  • 1960-09-20 UN General Assembly admit 13 African countries & Cyprus (96 nations)

United Nations <b>Speech</b>United Nations Speech

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
  • 1961-04-13 UN General Assembly condemns South-Africa's apartheid
  • 1961-09-13 Battles between UN & Katanga troops in Congo
  • 1961-11-03 UN General Assembly unanimously elects U Thant as acting Secretary-General after the death of Dag Hammarskjöld in a plane crash
  • 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
  • 1962-01-30 UN General Assembly censures Portugal over Angola
  • 1962-09-01 United Nations announces Earth's population has hit 3 billion

United Nations <b>Speech</b>United Nations Speech

1962-10-23 Adlai Stevenson speaks at the United Nations about the Cuba crisis

US Governor and Presidential Candidate Adlai Stevenson II
US Governor and Presidential Candidate
Adlai Stevenson II
  • 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"
  • 1962-11-06 UN General Assembly adopts resolution condemning South Africa
  • 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

United Nations <b>Speech</b>United Nations Speech

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
  • 1965-11-20 UN Security council calls for boycott of Rhodesia

Event of interestEvent of Interest

1966-10-05 Nigerian government presents a copy of Ben Enwonwu's sculpture "The Awakening" to the United Nations

Artist Ben Enwonwu
Artist
Ben Enwonwu
  • 1967-06-10 Israel, Syria, Jordan, Iraq & Egypt end "6-Day War" with UN help
  • 1967-11-22 UN Security council passes resolution 242; Israel must give back occupied land
  • 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)
  • 1970-11-20 UN General Assembly accepts membership of People's Republic of China

Famous Birthdays

  • 1883-12-10 Andrej J. Vysjinski, Russian lawyer and UN ambassador, born in Odessa, Kherson Governorate, Russian Empire (d. 1954)
  • 1886-01-31 Alfonso López Pumarejo, 16th President of Colombia (Liberal: 1934-38 and 1942-46) and statesman (President of UN security council 1948), born in Honda, Colombia (d. 1959)
  • 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), born in Sialkot, Pakistan (d. 1985)
  • 1896-07-16 Trygve Lie, Norwegian politician and 1st Secretary-General of the United Nations (1946-52), born in Oslo (d. 1968)

Person of interestAdlai Stevenson II

1900-02-05 Adlai Stevenson II, American politician, US ambassador to UN (1961-65), Governor of Illinois (1949-53) and Democratic presidential candidate (1952, 56), born in Los Angeles, California (d. 1965)

US Governor and Presidential Candidate Adlai Stevenson II
US Governor and Presidential Candidate
Adlai Stevenson II
  • 1904-01-11 Frederick Boland, Irish diplomat/president (UN General Assembly)

Person of interestRalph Bunche

1904-08-07 Ralph Bunche, American diplomat to the UN (Nobel Peace Prize1950), born in Detroit, Michigan (d. 1971)

Diplomat and Nobel Laureate Ralph Bunche
Diplomat and Nobel Laureate
Ralph Bunche
  • 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
  • 1912-08-02 Vladimir Žerjavić, Croatian economist and UN statistician, born in Križ, Moslavania, Croatia (d. 2001)
  • 1915-05-29 Gerald Charles Arcedeckne Vanneck, 6th Baron Huntingfield, British agent to UN Secreteriat (d. 1994)
  • 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 Hans Blix, Swedish head of the United Nations Monitoring, Verification and Inspection Commission 2000-2003, born in Uppsala, Sweden
  • 1931-06-22 Hennadiy Udovenko, Ukranian politician and diplomat (UN General Assembly President, 1997-98), born in Kryvyi Rih, Ukraine (d. 2013)
  • 1932-03-12 Andrew Young, US ambassador to UN (1977-79)/(Mayor-D-Atlanta)

Person of interestKofi Annan

1938-04-08 Kofi Annan, Ghanaian diplomat and 7th Secretary-General of the United Nations (1997-2006), born in Comassie, Gold Coast (d. 2018)

UN Secretary-General Kofi Annan
UN Secretary-General
Kofi Annan
  • 1938-04-13 John Weston, British diplomat, representative for NATO (1992-95) and UN (1995-98)
  • 1939-09-22 Timothy Wirth, American politician (Rep-D-CO, 1975-87), President of United Nations Foundation, born in Santa Fe, New Mexico
  • 1940-09-17 Jan Eliasson, Swedish diplomat (4th Deputy Secretary-General of the United Nations), born in Gothenburg, Sweden
  • 1942-02-01 Muna Wassef, Syrian actress (The Message) and UN Goodwill ambassador, born in Damascus, Syria

Person of interestBan Ki-moon

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
  • 1947-02-09 Carla Del Ponte, Swiss UN prosecutor
  • 1947-09-16 Dumisani Kumalo, South African anti-apartheid activist and UN ambassador, born in KwaMbunda, South Africa (d. 2019)

Person of interestAntónio Guterres

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

PM of Portugal and Secretary-General of the United Nations António Guterres
PM of Portugal and Secretary-General of the United Nations
António Guterres

Person of interestHelen Clark

1950-02-26 Helen Clark, New Zealand Prime Minister (Labour: 1999-2008) and Administrator of the United Nations Development Programme (2009-17), born in Hamilton, New Zealand

New Zealand Prime Minister Helen Clark
New Zealand Prime Minister
Helen Clark
  • 1956-03-09 Shashi Tharoor, Indian politician and diplomat (United Nations Under-Secretary General), born in London
  • 1961-07-15 Scott Ritter, UN weapons inspector in Iraq
  • 1962-02-24 Kelly Craft, American diplomat, US ambassador to the UN (2019-), born in Lexington, Kentucky
  • 1962-08-14 Mark Robert Isfeld, Canadian soldier and United Nations peacekeeper, born in Zweibrücken, Germany
  • 1972-01-20 Nikki Haley, American politician & diplomat (Governor South Carolina, 2011-17; US UN Ambassador, 2017-), born in Bamberg, South Carolina

Famous Weddings


LoveWedding 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

LoveWedding 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 lawyer and UN ambassador, dies at 70
  • 1958-06-26 Andrija Štampar, Croatian physician and United Nations diplomat (b. 1888)
  • 1959-11-20 Alfonso López Pumarejo, 16th President of Colombia (Liberal: 1934-38 and 1942-46) and statesman (President of UN security council 1948), dies at 73
  • 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

Person of interestAdlai Stevenson II

1965-07-14 Adlai Stevenson II, US ambassador to UN (1961-65), Governor of Illinois (1949-53) and Democratic presidential candidate (1952, 56), dies at 65

US Governor and Presidential Candidate Adlai Stevenson II
US Governor and Presidential Candidate
Adlai Stevenson II
  • 1968-12-30 Trygve Lie, Norwegian politician and 1st Secretary-General of the United Nations (1946-52), dies at 72

Person of interestRalph Bunche

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 economist and UN statistician, dies at 89
  • 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)
  • 2013-02-12 Hennadiy Udovenko, Ukranian politician and diplomat (UN General Assembly President, 1997-98), dies at 81
  • 2016-02-16 Boutros Boutros-Ghali, Egyptian politician and 6th Secretary-General of the United Nations (1992- 96), dies at 93

Person of interestKofi Annan

2018-08-18 Kofi Annan, Ghanaian diplomat and 7th Secretary-General of the United Nations (1997-2006), dies at 80

UN Secretary-General Kofi Annan
UN Secretary-General
Kofi Annan
  • 2019-01-20 Dumisani Kumalo, South African anti-apartheid activist and UN ambassador, dies at 71