Which Country Is The Latest To Join The UN As A Member?

South Sudan attained independence from Sudan on July 9, 2011.
South Sudan attained independence from Sudan on July 9, 2011.

South Sudan is officially referred to as the Republic of South Sudan and is located in East-Central Africa. The country attained independence on July 9, 2011 from Sudan and therefore taking the title as world’s newest nation, and Africa’s 54th independent country. The country’s capital city is Juba. In the same year on July 14, the country became the 193rd member of the United Nations. South Sudan is bordered by Sudan, Ethiopia, Kenya, Uganda, the Democratic Republic Of The Congo, and the Central African Republic. The country has a population of about 12 million who are mainly Christians, and in 2012 the country signed the Geneva Convention.

Independence of South Sudan

South Sudan became independent following the referendum that was held in 2011 after the comprehensive peace agreement of 2005, following several years of civil war between north and south Sudan. The referendum was conducted between January 9 and January 15 where the citizens overwhelmingly voted to break away from Sudan. When the results were announced on January 30, 2011 about 98.3% of the people voted for independence. On the midnight of July 9, 2011, South Sudan was declared an independent country and was recognized as the Republic of South Sudan. The country also joined the African Union on July 28, 2011, as the 54th member state of the union

Becoming a UN Member

A country may join and become a member of the UN when the General Assembly of the UN admits them following the recommendation of the Security Council. The United Nations charter states that any country can become a member as long as they are peace-loving and can consent to the obligations as stated in the charter of the UN. The recognition of a new nation or a government is the prerogative of other states and governments that can choose to recognize or reject to recognize. This implies that the countries that recognize another nation are ready to initiate diplomatic relations. Given that the UN is not a government and neither is it a state, it has no power to recognize either a government or a state. Because the United Nations is an organization of independent states, it may choose to admit a new state as a member or accept credentials from the representatives of a new government.

Procedures to Follow to Be a Member

A state wishing to be a member of the United Nations would submit to the Secretary-General an application and a written communication affirming that it is accepting the application according to the charter of the United Nations. The security council of the UN would consider the application, and any recommendation to be admitted must have affirmative votes of at least 9 out of the 15 council members, as long as the five permanent council members have not voted against the application. The five permanent members of the United Nations with veto powers include the United States, China, Russia, France, and the United Kingdom. Members of the Security Council recommends the resolution to admit a state to the General Assembly for deliberation, and at least 2/3 majority vote is required in the General Assembly for the state to be admitted. The membership becomes operative from the date when the resolve for admission is approved.


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