Joining, Leaving and Being Kicked Out of the United Nations

Updated: Nov 19, 2021

To celebrate the upcoming launch of our first course, A Beginners Guide to Model UN, we’re doing a deep dive into the United Nations and its related organizations. Sign up to our mailing list to keep updated on all of our articles and upcoming courses!





If you read our previous article, The Creation of The United Nations, you will know that the United Nations now has 193 member nations, but what about new nations? How do they join? The number of countries in the world is constantly changing, as new conflicts arise and existing countries separate or join together. There are many benefits to having representation within the United Nations, so how do you go about it?


To start with, you have to be a recognized country. The United Nations doesn’t have the power to declare a country a nation. That power only lies with other countries and their governments. When a new state emerges, it is up to the individual country if they will consider them a nation. For example, Palestine and Taiwan are recognized as countries by some nations, but not others. While it is up to individual governments how they will determine who is a country, and who is not, there are some common themes. You must have a defined territory, a permanent population and a government. Then you must declare independence. The decision to recognize a country is then left to the government of each individual nation. In the United States, the President declares who they will recognize as a legitimate country, depending on which nations they would like to, or need to have relationships with.


Now, we see that Taiwan meets most of this criteria and is recognized by many (but not all) nations. However, it is not one of the 193 UN represented states. So what does Taiwan, or any other country, need to do if they want rep