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Author Picture By - Jun 16, 2015

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On June 26, 1945, delegates from 50 nations came together to sign the United Nations Charter – a historic moment for global peace and progress.

To mark the UN’s 70th anniversary this year, over the coming week, we will be sharing 70 facts about the UN and the work it does around the world.

Here are 10 facts to get us started!

1. The UN has six official languages – Arabic, Chinese, English, French, Russian, and Spanish. (Tweet it)

2. The UN has had 8 Secretaries-General – and no two from the same country. The first Secretary-General was Trygve Lie of Norway. The current Secretary-General is Ban Ki-moon of the Republic of Korea. (Tweet it)

3. The UN Girls’ Education Initiative seeks to narrow the gender gap in education and make sure all children – girls and boys – have access to education. (Tweet it)

4. The UN General Assembly adopted the Universal Declaration of Human Rights on December 10, 1948. Listen to First Lady Eleanor Roosevelt read the declaration. (Tweet this)

5. 50 nations attended the historic 1945 San Francisco Conference that ended with the signing of the UN Charter on June 26. (Tweet this)

6. The United Nations Charter starts with the phrase, “We the peoples of the United Nations …” Read it in full here. (Tweet it)

7. The United Nations Children’s Fund, or UNICEF, gets its acronym from the program’s original name: United Nations International Children’s Emergency Fund. UNICEF works around the world to promote the rights and well-being of children. (Share it)

8. The United Nations has carried out 71 peacekeeping operations since 1948. There are currently 16 UN peace operations. (Tweet it)

9. The UN’s World Food Programme is the world’s largest humanitarian agency fighting hunger. (Share this)

10. Cuban leader Fidel Castro holds the record for the longest speech ever given at the UN: 269 minutes in 1960. (Tweet this)

(Photo:  26/Jun/1945. San Francisco, United States. UN Photo/Yould. www.unmultimedia.org/photo/)

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