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Speak. Hear. Resolve.

July 18 19 and 20
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CHIREC, Kondapur Campus

The United Nations and Model UN

What is the United Nations?

The United Nations Organization (UNO) or simply United Nations (UN) is an
international organization whose stated aims are facilitating cooperation in
international law, international security, economic development, social
progress, human rights, and the achieving of world peace. The UN was
founded in 1945 after World War II to replace the League of Nations, to stop
wars between countries, and to provide a platform for dialogue. It contains
multiple subsidiary organizations to carry out its missions.

How and when was it formed?

The United Nations was established in 1945 to maintain international peace
and promote cooperation in solving international economic, social and
humanitarian problems. The earliest concrete plan for a new world
organization was begun under the aegis of the U.S. State Department in
1939. Franklin D. Roosevelt first coined the term 'United Nations' as a term
to describe the Allied countries. The term was first officially used on 1
January 1942 when 26 governments signed the Atlantic Charter, pledging to
continue the war effort.
UN officially came into existence on 24 October 1945 upon ratification of the
Charter by the five permanent members of the Security Council—France, the
Republic of China, the Soviet Union, the United Kingdom and the United
States—and by a majority of the other 46 signatories.

Who are the members of the United Nations?

There are currently 193 United Nations member states.
The United Nations Charter outlines the rules for membership:
1. Membership in the United Nations is open to all other peace-loving states
which accept the obligations contained in the present Charter and, in the
judgment of the Organization, are able and willing to carry out these
2. The admission of any such state to membership in the United Nations will
be effected by a decision of the General Assembly upon the
recommendation of the Security Council.

What does the UN do?

The primary aim of the UN is to promote and maintain international peace
and security through peaceful means and through the consensus of the
international community. This job description as you can imagine will include
quite a bit. In reality the UN is responsible for deliberating and solving all of
the ills and issues that plague the world. It discusses, formulates policies and
recommendations to member states and carries out various programmes for
the fulfilment of its primary goal. The spectrum of agendas discussed at the
UN vary from Global Warming and Human Trafficking to existing security
situations across the world such as the situation in Libya, Cote’ de Iviore and
Money laundering and tax evasion. Concept development is also done by
the UN when agendas such as Universal Jurisdiction, Responsibility to Protect
and Gender Mainstreaming are discussed. Discussions aside, implementation
of the UN decisions is not only done by member states but also by various
UN bodies such as the UNIODC, WHO, UNICEF etc. The UN family of organs
in itself is very large covering every known field of contention and interest in
the world. The broad functions of the UN can be summarised in the
1. Peacekeeping and security
2. Human rights and humanitarian assistance
3. Social and Economic development
4. Mandates (ensuring that organs of the UN stick to their mandates)

What are the primary and other organs of the UN?

The UN has 5 principles organs:

1. General Assembly:
• The General Assembly is the main deliberative assembly of the United
Nations. Composed of all United Nations member states, the assembly
meets in regular yearly sessions under a president elected from among
the member states. Over a two-week period at the start of each
session, all members have the opportunity to address the assembly.
• When the General Assembly votes on important questions, a two-
thirds majority of those present and voting is required. Examples of
important questions include: recommendations on peace and security;
election of members to organs; admission, suspension, and expulsion
of members; and, budgetary matters. All other questions are decided
by majority vote.
2. Security Council:
• The Security Council is charged with maintaining peace and security
among countries. While other organs of the United Nations can only
make 'recommendations' to member governments, the Security
Council has the power to make binding decisions that member
governments have agreed to carry out.
• The Security Council is made up of 15 member states, consisting of 5
permanent members – China, France, Russia, the United Kingdom and
the United States – and 10 non-permanent members. The five
permanent members hold veto power over substantive but not
procedural resolutions allowing a permanent member to block
adoption but not to block the debate of a resolution unacceptable to
3. Economic and Social Council (ECOSOC):
• The Economic and Social Council (ECOSOC) assists the General
Assembly in promoting international economic and social cooperation
and development. ECOSOC has 54 members, all of which are elected
by the General Assembly for a three-year term.
• The ECOSOC serves as the central forum for discussing international
economic and social issues, and for formulating policy
recommendations addressed to Member States and the United
Nations system. Its main tasks include the promotion of higher
standards of living, full employment, and economic and social
progress; the
• identification of solutions to international economic, social and health
problems; the facilitation of international cultural and educational
cooperation; and the advancement of universal respect for human
rights and fundamental freedoms.
4. Secretariat:
• The United Nations Secretariat is headed by the Secretary-General,
assisted by a staff of international civil servants worldwide. It provides
studies, information, and facilities needed by United Nations bodies for
their meetings. It also carries out tasks as directed by the UN Security
Council, the UN General Assembly, the UN Economic and Social
Council, and other UN bodies.
• The Secretary-General's duties include helping resolve international
disputes, administering peacekeeping operations, organizing
international conferences, gathering information on the
implementation of Security Council decisions, and consulting with
member governments regarding various initiatives.
5. International Court of Justice:
• The International Court of Justice (ICJ), located in The Hague,
Netherlands, is the primary judicial organ of the United Nations.
• Its main functions are to settle legal disputes submitted to it by states
and to give advisory opinions on legal questions submitted to it by
duly authorized international organs, agencies, and the UN General
6. Other specialized agencies:
• Food and Agriculture Organization – FAO
• International Atomic Energy Agency – IAEE
• International Civil Aviation Organization – ICAO
• International Fund for Agricultural Development – IFAD
• International Labour Organization– ILO
• International Maritime Organization – IMO
• International Monetary Fund – IMF
• International Telecommunications Union – ITO
• International Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organisation –
• United Nations International Development Organisation – UNIDO
• Universal Postal Union – UPO
• World Bank – WB
• World Food Programme – WFP
• World Health Organization – WHO
• World Intellectual Property Organization – WIPO
• World Meteorological Organization – WMO
• World Tourism Organization – UNWTO

Useful links to understand the United Nations system

United Nations website:
United Nations Bibliographic Information system:

What is a Model United Nations Conference?

Model United Nations (also Model UN or MUN) is an academic simulation of
the United Nations that aims to educate participants about civics, current
events, effective communication, globalization and multilateral diplomacy. In
standard Model UN, students take on roles as diplomats and participate in a
simulated session of an intergovernmental organization (IGO).

How did the concept of MUNs develop?

Model and civic simulation education are older than the United Nations.
Records indicate that as early as the 1920s students in the United States of
America were participating in collegiate simulations of the League of
Nations, the predecessor to the United Nations. The modern day National
Model United Nations in New York City and Harvard Model United Nations
both began as simulations of the League of Nations in the 1920s. Harvard
Model United Nations is the world's oldest continuous College Model UN
conference, founded in 1955. Berkeley Model United Nations is the world's
oldest continuous High School Model UN conference, founded in 1952. The
National Model United Nations is one of the world's largest conferences with
over 5,000 participants and is most unique with a part of the conference
held at the United Nations in New York City. As the League of Nations was
dismantled and the United Nations was born in 1945, simulations of the
League of Nations were transformed into Model United Nations. Some
conferences still perform historical simulations, however, including League of
Nations crisis situations. These simulations now have grown to over 3000
and 2000 annual participants.
What do you do at an MUN?
In a MUN, participants research a country, take on roles as diplomats,
investigate international issues, debate, deliberate, consult, and then develop
solutions to world problems. More recently, simulation of other deliberative
bodies, such as the United States National Security Council, has been
included in Model United Nations, even if they are completely unrelated to
the UN or international affairs as a whole.
During a conference, participants must employ a variety of communication
and critical thinking skills in order to represent the policies of their country.
These skills include public speaking, group communication, research, policy
analysis, active listening, negotiating, conflict resolution, note taking, and
technical writing.
General Conference Rules
1. Dress Code: Formal Business Attire
• Men: Suit or a jacket and a dress pant (No jeans or cargo pants),
dress shirt, tie, socks and dress shoes.
• Ladies: Suit or dress slacks, formal skirts, blouses or sweaters, dress
• Delegates may also wear the traditional outfits of countries being

2. Behaviour:
A delegate has to behave cordially at all times in or out of committee.
Delegates have to be respectful to their fellow delegate, the executive
board and the secretariat. Any delegate caught exhibiting
unparliamentarily or unruly behaviour will be suspended from the
Smoking is prohibited in all conference buildings at all times. Alcohol
and illegal drugs are prohibited at all times. Any delegate caught in
possession of alcoholic beverages or illegal drugs will be barred from
the conference.

3. The Secretary General reserves the right to revise or grant

exemptions to the conference policies and deadlines.
Rules of Procedure
1. Point of Personal Privilege: A point of personal privilege is raised
when a delegate is feeling any physical discomfort. If the delegate wants
water, or a change in temperature etc., a point of personal privilege is
raised. This point can interrupt a speaker and can be raised at any point
throughout the flow of debate.

2. Point of Order: A point of order is raised by a delegate when a

procedural error has been made by the executive board or a factual or
procedural error has been made by another delegate. The point of
order can interrupt a speaker but is only applicable during formal
debate and the discussion of the resolution. It is not valid in moderated

3. Point of Inquiry: It is raised by a delegate to ask a procedural inquiry.

It cannot interrupt a speaker and is not valid in a moderated caucus.

4. Point of Information: The point of information is a tool used to

question another delegate during formal debate.

The usage of yields is restricted to formal debate. Once a delegate has
finished speaking on the general speaker’s list or a provisional speaker’s
list, and still has some time remaining, he/she can yield to the following:

1. To the chair: Delegates have the option to yield their remaining time
to chair. Once this is done, the delegate can simply go back to his/her
2. To another delegate: This yield is usually made when the resolution is
being discussed through a provisional speaker’s list. In this yield, the
speaker can yield their remaining time to another delegate.

3. To comments: The speaker yields their remaining time to comments


1. Motion to set the agenda: This is the first motion raised in an MUN
conference. It is used to change the default order of the agenda. This is
a debatable motion and once it is raised 2 delegates are selected to
speak for it and 2 delegates are selected to speak against it. Once all
the speakers have spoken simple placard voting is conducted. The
motion passes with simple majority (50%+1).

2. Motion to open General Speaker’s List: This motion is raised once the
agenda has been set. It requires simple majority

3. Motion to set Speaker’s time: This motion allows delegates to set the
speaker’s time in the. The time limit can be increased or decreased to
any extent. This motion is debatable, 2 delegates speak for and against.
It passes by simple majority.

4. Motion to move into a moderated caucus: A motion to move into

moderated caucus is used to begin a moderated caucus. It is passed
with simple majority.

5. Motion to move into an unmoderated caucus: A motion to move into

unmoderated caucus is used when any paperwork is needed. All Rules
of Procedure are lifted at this time.
6. Motion to suspend meeting: This motion is raised by the delegates so
that the committee can break for lunch, tea. It is also used to end the
last session on day 1 and 2. It passes with a simple majority

7. Motion to adjourn meeting: This motion is used to signify the end of

a MUN conference and is used at the end of the last session on the last
day. It passes by simple majority.

8. Motion to table debate: A motion to table debate is used to move to

another agenda or a topic. The committee may or may not come back
to the original agenda. The motion is debatable with 2 delegates
speaking for and against. The motion passes with a 2/3rd special

9. Motion to close debate: This motion is used to close debate and

move into voting. It passes with simple majority.

10. Motion to appeal to the chair’s decision: This motion is made by a

delegate when he/she feels that the chair has made an incorrect
decision. The motion has to be made immediately after the decision has
been taken by the chair. Once the motion is made, the chair steps
down. The Assistant Director takes over the committee proceedings and
a member of the secretariat is called. The Secretariat Member then
presides over the ruling for the motion. 2 delegates speak for and 2
delegates speak against the validity of the motion. The chair then gives
his/her version and arguments. After which the Secretary General
conducts a vote. The motion requires 2/3rd majority to pass. If it receives
that majority then the chair’s decision is retracted.

11. Motion to divide the question: question: Once debate on a topic has
been closed a delegate can raise a motion to divide the draft resolution
into part A and part B (the number of parts can be more than 2) and
that voting on each part should take place separately. This is a
debatable motion where 2 speakers will speak for and 2 speakers will
speak against the motion. After this the chair will take a vote. The
motion passes with simple majority. Each part is taken as separate
resolution and is subject to a substantive vote.

Plea to follow up
A plea to follow up is used when a delegate feels that another delegate
hasn’t answered his/her question/point of information satisfactorily. It
can only be asked by the delegate whose point of information was
recognized. In essence it is a tool used to cross question.

Right to Reply
If a member of the committee makes a personal attack on another
delegate, then the offended delegate is permitted to reply to the
delegate. It is not applicable is an attack is made on the delegate’s
stance. The chair makes the ultimate ruling to whether the delegate in
question deserves a right of reply. All rights of reply must be submitted
in writing to the chair.

Flow of Debate
Roll Call
The roll call is the first order of business in any MUN conference. The
Assistant Director begins with reading aloud the names of all member
states. A delegate can respond to their roll call either as ‘present’ or
‘present and voting’. A ‘present and voting’ response to the roll call
prevents a delegate from abstaining on a substantive vote.

Setting of the Agenda

Every MUN conference usually has 2-3 agendas which are present in
predefined default order. In this stage delegates have the opportunity
to change the default order of the agenda. The agenda is set through a

Opening of General Speaker’s List

The next stage in most MUN conferences is the opening of the general
speaker’s list (GSL). The GSL is opened through a motion. Once the
motion passes the chair asks for delegates willing to speak and then
randomly selects those delegates who wish to be put on the GSL. The
delegate raising the motion is by default the first speaker.

Formal Debate
It is the ‘standard’ debate that occurs at an MUN conference. Delegates
speak for a certain amount of time in an order based on the speaker’s
list. Formal debate includes all speeches made in the GSL. Every GSL
speech can be subject to questions at the delegate's discretion. Formal
debate must end before moving into informal debate.

Informal Debate

As and when the committee deems fit, it can move into informal debate
through the use of a motion. Informal debate has 2 components:
1. Moderated Caucus: The moderated caucus is by far one of the most
important parts of an MUN. It is simply a discussion on any topic that
falls within the ambit of the entire agenda. It facilitates freer exchange of
ideas, delegates remain seated and the chair will call on willing
delegates to speak one at a time. A moderated caucus can be initiated
by raising a motion to suspend formal debate.
2. Unmoderated Caucus: A type of caucus in which delegates leave
their seats to mingle and speak freely. Enables the free sharing of ideas
to an extent not possible in formal debate or moderated caucuses.
Unmoderated Caucuses are used by delegates to divide themselves into
blocs, find support and to write working papers and draft resolutions.
An unmoderated caucus can be started through a motion to suspend

Debate usually moves between formal and informal debate.

These methods of debating are also used to discuss the
resolution or the end document.

Resolution Process
The process involving the introduction of a resolution, its modification
and its passing is called the resolution process. The resolution process
begins with the introduction of the working paper.

1. Working Paper:
• A working paper is pre-cursor to the final resolution.
• A working paper is usually worked on during an Un-moderated
caucus and is introduced once the committee feels that the
agenda has been sufficiently discussed through debate taking
place in both the formal and informal format.
• It is simply a list of proposed solutions.
• Once a working paper is prepared sufficiently by a bloc, it is
submitted to the executive board.
• The executive board will only accept the working paper if it has the
support of more than 20% of member states present at that time.
• New points and ideas should be added and when a working paper
is comprehensive enough, delegates should formulate it into a
draft resolution.
• If 2 working papers are similar then the executive can ask the
authors or the 2 submitting blocs to merge the working papers.

2. Draft Resolution:
Committee: ABC
Agenda: xyz
Sponsors: USA, UK…. (maximum 4-5, sometimes 2)
Signatories: India, China, Afghanistan…. (no upper limit)
Pre-ambulatory Clauses:
Clause 1 beginning……… ,
Clause 2 beginning……… ,
Clause 3 beginning……… , (pre-ambulatory clauses are not numbered.)
Operative Clauses:
1. …………;
2. ………….;
3. ………… .( the last operative clause ends with a full stop)
• A draft resolution is a document that seeks to fix the problems
addressed by a committee. If passed the draft resolution becomes
a resolution.
• Sponsor: A sponsor is a delegate who has played an integral part
in the formulation of a draft resolution. A sponsor knows and can
defend all the points of the draft resolution.
• Signatory: A signatory is a delegate who simply wants to see the
draft resolution discussed in committee.
• Pre- ambulatory clauses: They describe the problem being
addressed, recall past actions, explain the purpose of the
resolution and offer support for the operative clauses that follow.
Each clause in the preamble begins with an underlines word that
and ends with a comma.
• The total number of Sponsors and Signatories must constitute at
least 20% of the total committee present.
• Operative clause: They are numbered and state the action to be
taken by the body. These clauses all begin with present tense
active verbs, which are generally stronger than those used in the
preamble. Each operative clause is followed by a semi colon and
the last operative clause end with a period.
• Once the draft resolution has been introduced, it can be discussed
either through a moderated caucus or a provisional speaker’s list.
In each case sponsors are expected to defend their draft
resolution and answer any questions with regards to it that will be
brought up by the delegates of the committee.

List of pre-ambulatory clauses-

• Affirming • Observing
• Realizing • Having heard
• Guided by • Aware of
• Confident • Convinced
• Alarmed by • Emphasizing
• Recognizing • Keeping in mind
• Deeply regretting • Believing
• Contemplating • Noting with regret
• Having considered • Expecting
• Fulfilling • Fully believing

List of operative clauses-

• Accepts • Calls upon

• Emphasizes • Has resolved
• Affirms • Condemns
• Encourages • Proclaims
• Approves • Confirms
• Endorses • Reaffirms
• Authorizes • Considers
• Expresses its hope • Recommends
• Calls • Deplores
• Further invites • Regrets
3. Amendments
• The amendment process begins once the chair says that the draft
resolution is open to amendments. It is through amendments that
any delegate can make changes to a given resolution. A clause
can be amended only once as an amendment to an amendment
is not valid.
• Amendments can also be divided into friendly and unfriendly
• Friendly amendments: A friendly amendment is whose inclusion
into the resolution is agreed to by all the sponsors of the
resolution. A committee vote is not required.
• Unfriendly amendment: Even if one sponsor opposes an
amendment it becomes an unfriendly amendment. In this situation
a roll call vote is taken where the delegates can say yes, no or
abstain according to their role call. The amendment is included if it
passes with 2/3rd majority.
• There are 3 kinds of amendments-

To: Executive Board
From: (Country name)
Draft Resolution (number of draft resolution to be amended)
-------New clause-------

To: Executive Board
From: (Country name)
Draft resolution (number of draft resolution to be amended)
Deletion of clause x

To: Executive Board
From: (Country name)
Draft resolution(number of draft resolution to be amended)
Original clause:----------
New clause:----------

Voting on any draft resolution can be done only when a motion to
close debate is passed by the committee. Delegates can vote in 3
different ways- yes, no or abstain. A resolution can only pass if it has
2/3rd majority support of the committee minus the absent members and
abstaining members. If a delegate replied ‘present’ to the roll call then
all the 3 options of agreeing, disagreeing and abstaining to a resolution
are present. However, if a delegate replied ‘present and voting’ to the
roll call, then during the voting for a resolution that delegate does not
have the choice to abstain from a resolution. Available votes to
1. Yes- The delegate agrees to a resolution.
2. No- The delegate disagrees to a resolution.
3. Abstain- The delegate has no opinion of the resolution and it does
not matter to the respective country if it passes or fails.
4. No with rights- This is used if a sponsor has to say no to his/her
own resolution usually when it has been amended to an extent
that it goes against the delegate’s foreign policy.
5. Pass-When this is used, the delegate vote is not registered, and
the delegate shall be recalled after completion of voting to
register his/her vote.

Position Paper
Writing a well-researched and substantive position paper is the best way to
prepare for any Model United Nations conference. Through the position paper
your delegation will express its ideas and policies by defining your nation -state’s
perspective on the issues at hand. Moreover, it is the means by which you bring all
of your research together in a logical and succinct form.

Researching and writing a position paper go hand in hand. While researching will
give you an overwhelming amount of information, it is through the position paper
that you will be able to narrow in on the mission you have set before yourself. In
writing the position paper, you will be able to understand the complexity of the
situations and issues, as seen from your country’s vantage point. To say it simply,
you will be condensing the vast amounts of books, magazine articles, newspaper
clippings, and websites you’ve collected down to just a few more comprehensible
After breaking it down, your position paper should flow smoothly. What you
should aim for is quality not quantity. Overall, your position paper should exhibit
the following:
 comprehensive research into the matter
 an organized and argumentative structure
 original thinking that follows with the policy of the represented state.
 an attitude of seriousness to the issues in question

The position paper, ultimately, is your opportunity to develop a deep

understanding of the issues presented in the committee, and thus will go a long
way in preparing you for direct interaction and debate with other delegates.

One position paper is due per delegation (country) for each topic on the
committee agenda, whether it has been assigned to a single delegate or
 8.5 inch by 11 inch paper (A4 size)
 No cover page
 1 inch margins on all sides (top, left, right, and bottom)
 typed in 12 point Times New Roman font
 1 page per topic
 all quotations must be citied
 All position paper will be extensively cross referenced through various sources, both
online and in-print. If there is any evidence of using the work of others without citations,
the position paper will not be eligible for an award.

Delegates must also remember to correctly cite sources, and papers without any cited
sources will not be accepted. All Position Papers must be emailed by 10 th July, 2014 to
their committee chair’s email ID.