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Your guide to UN and UN documents and reports

UN tribunals

The United Nations has established international tribunals designed to bring to justice the instigators and perpetrators associated with wartime atrocities:

  1. the International Criminal Tribunal for the former Yugoslavia (ICTY)
  2. the International Criminal Tribunal for Rwanda (ICTR)
  3. Sierra Leone - Residual Special Court for Sierra Leone (RSCSL)
  4. Lebanon - Special Tribunal for Lebanon (STL)
  5. Cambodia - Extraordinary Chambers in the Courts of Cambodia (ECCC)
  6. The International Residual Mechanism for Criminal Tribunals (IRMCT). The 'Mechanism' took over functions from the ICTY and the ICTR.

Functions of the tribunals

The tribunals have been established by Security Council resolutions adopted under Chapter VII of the UN Charter. They have a threefold function:

  1. To do justice.
  2. To deter further crimes.
  3. To contribute to the restoration and maintenance of international peace.

The Extraordinary Chambers in the Courts of Cambodia is a national court, established as part of an agreement between the United Nations and Cambodia.

UN documents and publications in catalogues and databases

  • United Nations Digital Library. UN official documents and open access publications, UN maps, UN voting data and speeches.
  • UN iLibrary. UN publications online covering different topics.
  • ODS. UN documents published from 1993 onward and scanned documents published between 1946 and 1993 in the official languages of the UN.
  • Daily list of documents (ODS). Documents published for the day, with full text links, can be found in the United Nations full text database ODS.
  • UNBIS Thesaurus is a multilingual database of the controlled vocabulary used to describe UN documents.
  • Index to proceedings is an annual bibliographic guide to the proceedings and documentation of the major UN organs. The index includes:
    • a list of all documents
    • a comprehensive subject index
    • an index to speeches
    • a voting chart of resolutions


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