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The United Nations (UN) is the primary formal organization coordinating activities between states on a global scale and the only inter-governmental organization with a truly universal membership (193 governments).
In addition to the main organs and various humanitarian programs and commissions of the UN itself, there are about 20 functional organizations affiliated with the UN's Economic and Social Council (ECOSOC), such as the World Health Organization, the International Labour Organization, and International Telecommunications Union. Of particular interest politically are the World Bank, the International Monetary Fund and the World Trade Organization.
The World Bank and the International Monetary Fund (IMF), were formed together at the Mount Washington Hotel in Bretton Woods, New Hampshire, United States in July 1944, to foster global monetary cooperation and to fight poverty by financially assisting states in need.
The World Trade Organization (WTO) sets the rules of international trade. It already has a semi-legislative body (The General Council, reaching decisions by consensus), and a judicial body (The Dispute Settlement Body). Another influential economical international organization is the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD), with membership of 30 democratic members.
G8, an association of the eight highest GDP Nations of the World. The leaders of the G8 countries meet annually in person to coordinate their policies in confronting global issues, such as poverty, terrorism, infectious diseases, and climate change.
G20, an association of twenty developing and established nations and entities, including the European Union. Militarily, the UN deploys peacekeeping forces, usually to build and maintain post-conflict peace and stability. When a more aggressive international military action is undertaken, either ad-hoc coalitions (e.g., multinational force in Iraq), or regional military alliances (e.g., NATO) are used.
International law encompasses international treaties, customs, and globally acceptable legal principles. With the exceptions of cases brought before the ICC and ICJ (see below), the laws are interpreted by national courts. Many violations of treaty or customary law obligations are overlooked.
The International Court of Justice (ICJ) (also known as World Court) is the judiciary organ of the United Nations. It settles disputes submitted to it voluntarily by states (only), and gives advisory opinions on legal questions submitted to it by other organs of the UN, such as the General Assembly or Security Council.
Nearly half of all United Nations (U.N.) member states are now issuing biometric e-passports, according to the newest data from the International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO), the U.N. agency that oversees international air travel. ICAO, which held its 20th TAG/MRTD meeting in September, reports that 93 out of 193 U.N. member states now issue e-passports, with 21 additional countries ready to deploy the technology in the next 12 to 48 months.