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  UN resolution on Iraq
Updated 09 June 2004, 14.55
UN inspectors in pre-war Iraq

Citizenship 11-14/KS3/Levels E&F
The United Nations

Quiz and decision making exercise: How the UN Security Council makes decisions on global security.

Learning aims

  • UN membership
  • The UN Security Council
  • UN resolution
Read the story


Correct answers are marked with*

[1] What is the UN?

  • A: United Nationals
  • B: United Nations *
  • C: Unified Nations

    [2] When was the UN set up?

  • A: 1945*
  • B: 1965
  • C: 1985

    [3] What event contributed to it being set up?

  • A: Vietnam war
  • B: World war II*
  • C: Famine in Africa

    [4] There are 193 countries in the world, how many are members of the UN?

  • A:191*
  • B:193
  • C:181

    [5] Which 2 countries are not members?

  • A: Vatican*
  • B: Taiwan*
  • C: Iraq
  • D: Afghanistan

    [6] The UN has a security council, a sub-group that tries to keep the world a safe place. Who has permanent membership?

  • A: China
  • B: Russia
  • C: France
  • D: United States
  • E: United Kingdom
  • F: All of these*

    [7] When the Security Council hears about a threat to peace the first thing it does is:

  • A: Sends weapons inspectors
  • B: Tries to get both sides to reach an agreement without fighting*
  • C: Sends soldiers

    [8] If there is already fighting what does the security council try to do?

  • A: Stop the fighting immediately*
  • B: Make sure the right person wins
  • C: Find out who started it and punish them

    [9] UN members sometimes send troops to keep opposing armies apart. This is called:

  • A: UN Peacekeeping*
  • B: UN Sanctions
  • C: UN Resolution

    [10] The UN's last resort for solving a problem is:

  • A: Collective military action*
  • B: Economic sanctions (trade embargo)

    Main activity

    Role play
    Convene a meeting of the Security Council.

    [A] Assign these roles to the group.

    Permanent members:
    Countries that were important in 1945 when the UN was set up.

    • France
    • UK
    • Russia
    • China
    • United States
    Temporary members
    Countries voted on to the Security Council as of Jan 2003.
    • Germany
    • Guinea
    • Mexico
    • Pakistan
    • Spain
    • Syria
    • Angola
    • Bulgaria
    • Cameroon
    • Chile
    [B]Explain the rules for voting.

    -One member, one vote
    -Any permanent member can veto a decision
    -Nine votes needed to carry a decision
    -Five of the nine votes must come from permanent members

    [C] Ask the council to vote on these proposals:

    Proposal one
    All Americans have to pay half their incomes in to a big pot. This to be shared out for every other country in the world to buy weapons.

    Proposal Two
    Taiwan (an enemy of China) should be allowed to double its army by purchasing lots of weapons from Russia and France.

    Proposal Three
    India (which has a border dispute with Pakistan over Kashmir) should be allowed to double its army by purchasing lots of weapons from Russia and France.

    Proposal Four
    Israel (an important ally of the USA) should be allowed to develop lots more weapons. This may not go down well with its Arab neighbours (like Syria).

    Extension activity
    Write a summary explaining how the voting system favours some countries and their allies.

    How would the permanent members of the UN security council be different if it was being set up today.
    Prompt: Japan in, UK out, etc

    Teachers' Background

    • The UN originally had 51 Member States now it has 191 members. The Vatican is not a member and Taiwan is not recognised as an independent state.

    • The UN logo shows the world held in the 'olive branches of peace'.

    • Kofi Annan of Ghana is the seventh UN Secretary-General.

    • Came into existence on 24 October 1945 (now United Nations Day).

    • The UN's purpose is to work for peace and development, based on justice, human dignity and the well-being of all people.

    • They meet in the General Assembly, which is the closest thing to a world parliament.

    • Each country has a single vote.

    • The Assembly's decisions become resolutions (not laws) that carry the weight of world governmental opinion.
    • The United Nations Headquarters is in New York City but the land and buildings are international territory.

    • The Security Council has primary responsibility, under the Charter, for the maintenance of international peace and security.

    • The Council has 15 members- five permanent members and 10 elected by the General Assembly for two-year terms

    For all links and resources click at top right.

  • More InfoBORDER=0
    WorldFuture Iraq plan gets UN backing
    Find OutGuide to the United Nations


    Web Links
    Kofi Annan biography
    United Nations
    Letters to Mrs Annan
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