United Nations logo

United Nations Editorial Manual Online

 
 

Footnotes and other references

III.   United Nations sources

     A.   Masthead documents
     B.   Reports issued as supplements to the Official Records
     C.   Sales publications
     D.   Reports of conferences
     E.   Resolutions and decisions
     F.   Statements and oral reports made before a United Nations body
     G.   Instruments in the Treaty Series
     H.   Advisory opinions, judgments and orders of the International Court of Justice
     I.    Conference room papers
     J.   Restricted documents
     K.  Material on the website of an office or department

The instructions and examples given below apply to sources cited in footnotes and text notes. For instructions on sources given in reference lists and bibliographies, see Reference lists and bibliographies.

A.   Masthead documents

Elements in the reference
Documents issued under a double symbol
Addenda and corrigenda
References to items contained in a source document
Several sources in one footnote

Elements in the reference

United Nations masthead documents are identified by:

  1. Title (normally given in descriptive form in the text)
  2. Document symbol (given in a text note or footnote)

When the exact title of a document must be given (e.g. when the title contains a colon), it is enclosed in quotation marks and the first word, proper nouns and adjectives and recognized geographical names are capitalized. Descriptive titles are not enclosed in quotation marks and the first word of the title is not capitalized.

Documents cited in text notes. In documents, supplements and publications, the symbol of the masthead document being cited may be given in parentheses in the text, normally after the full title or description. When a title or description is shortened, the symbol should be placed so as to avoid any possible ambiguity, as shown below in the third example.

Examples:

For its consideration of the item, the Committee had before it the report of the Secretary-General on measures to prevent terrorists from acquiring weapons of mass destruction (A/62/156).

The Secretary-General has the honour to transmit to the members of the General Assembly the report of the Joint Inspection Unit entitled "Towards a United Nations humanitarian assistance programme for disaster response and reduction: lessons learned from the Indian Ocean tsunami disaster" (JIU/REP/2006/5).

In his letter dated 31 October 2007 (S/2007/647), the President of the Security Council informed the Secretary-General that the members of the Council had decided to send a mission to Timor-Leste from 24 to 30 November 2007.

Documents cited in footnotes. In resolutions and decisions, document symbols are given in footnotes. The indicator should be placed after the full title or description of the report or other item being cited unless the reference would be ambiguous. The indicator should always be positioned so as to leave no doubt about the subject of the reference.

Example:

          The General Assembly,

           . . .

          1. Takes note of the progress report of the Secretary-General1 on the implementation of the recommendations contained in his report on the causes of conflict and the promotion of durable peace and sustainable development in Africa;2
__________

1 A/61/213.
2 A/52/871-S/1998/318.

Note: When the title of the report cited is the same as the title of the resolution in which the reference appears, the descriptive title is shortened to "the report of the Secretary-General". Several reports on the subject of the resolution may be referred to collectively as "the relevant reports of the Secretary-General".

Documents issued under a double symbol

Documents issued for two intergovernmental bodies (e.g. the General Assembly and the Security Council) have a double symbol (e.g. A/55/305-S/2000/809). Both symbols, joined by a hyphen, are included in a footnote or text note.

Example:

The report of the Panel on United Nations Peace Operations, better known as the Brahimi report (A/55/305-S/2000/809), provided a comprehensive analysis of peacekeeping and post-conflict peacebuilding.

There are exceptions to this practice. In the annual report of the Security Council to the General Assembly and the Repertoire of the Practice of the Security Council, for example, only the Security Council symbol of the source document (the "S/" part of the double symbol) is cited. In the previous example, only "S/2000/809" would be cited.

Addenda and corrigenda

In a reference to a document as a whole, all addenda (Add.) issued to the document should be included, as well as any corrigenda (Corr.) issued in the language of the text in which the reference appears. In an English text, for example, only the corrigenda to the English source document are cited; in a French text, only the corrigenda issued in French are cited.

In a reference to a specific part of a document, the addenda are included only if they relate directly to the part cited. All corrigenda issued in the language of the text should be included in the reference whether or not they relate specifically to the part cited.

The symbol of each corrigendum or addendum should normally be written out in full to enable automatic hyperlinking. If there are a number of symbols in the text and doing so would overly clutter it, the symbols may be included in a footnote rather than in a text note. Footnotes that include long series of addenda or corrigenda may also be cited as follows if including the full symbols would result in too lengthy a list: S/2017/10, S/2017/10/Corr.1 and S/2017/10/Add.1–52. See also Statements and oral reports made before a United Nations body below, for the similar treatment of summary records and verbatim records in references.

In the first example given below, the addenda are included because the report is being cited as a whole. In the second example, the addenda are omitted because they do not relate specifically to the section cited.

Examples:

The Commission had before it the report of the Secretary-General on preparations for the Eleventh United Nations Congress on Crime Prevention and Criminal Justice (E/CN.15/2003/11, E/CN.15/2003/11/Corr.1, E/CN.15/2003/11/Add.1 and E/CN.15/2003/11/Add.2).

At its twelfth session, the Commission considered additional proposals made by States on possible agenda items and workshop topics to be considered by the Eleventh Congress (see E/CN.15/2003/11 and E/CN.15/2003/11/Corr.1, sect. II).

Note: A report and its addendum or addenda are referred to as the "report" (singular) unless they have different titles.

Example:

The Council took note of the reports of the Secretary-General on strengthening the coordination of emergency humanitarian assistance of the United Nations and on the Central Emergency Response Fund (A/61/85-E/2006/81 and A/61/85/Add.1-E/2006/81/Add.1).

When the reference is to an addendum alone, the document symbol of the parent document should not be included. Corrigenda are not normally cited alone.

Example:

          The General Assembly,

          Taking note of the report of the Secretary-General on the Central Emergency Response Fund,1
__________
1 A/61/85/Add.1-E/2006/81/Add.1.

Documents with several addenda and corrigenda. A reference to a document with several addenda and corrigenda should indicate clearly, through the order, which corrigenda belong to each element.

Examples:

The General Assembly,

           Having considered the reports of the Secretary-General on the estimates in respect of special political missions, good offices and other political initiatives authorized by the General Assembly and/or the Security Council,1
__________
1 A/61/525, A/61/525/Corr.1, A/61/525/Add.1, A/61/525/Add.2, A/61/525/Add.3, A/61/525/Add.3/Corr.1, A/61/525/Add.4, A/61/525/Add.5, A/61/525/Add.6 and A/61/525/Add.7.

* * *

The General Assembly,

          Bearing in mind ... the report of the Secretary-General on the current financial crisis of the United Nations,1
__________
1 A/40/1102, A/40/1102/Corr.1, A/40/1102/Corr.2, A/40/1102/Corr.3, A/40/1102/Add.1, A/40/1102/Add.1/Corr.1, A/40/1102/Add.2, A/40/1102/Add.2/Corr.1, A/40/1102/Add.3, A/40/1102/Add.4, A/40/1102/Add.5, A/40/1102/Add.6 and A/40/1102/Add.7.

* * *

          The General Assembly,

          Having considered the proposed programme budget for the biennium 2018–2019,1
__________
1 A/72/6 (Introduction), A/72/6 (Introduction)/Corr.1, A/72/6 (Sect. 1), A/72/6 (Sect. 2), A/72/6 (Sect. 3), A/72/6 (Sect. 4), A/72/6 (Sect. 4)/Corr.1, A/72/6 (Sect. 5), A/72/6 (Sect. 5)/Corr.1, A/72/6 (Sect. 6), A/72/6 (Sect. 7), A/72/6 (Sect. 7)/Corr.1, A/72/6 (Sect. 8), A/72/6 (Sect. 8)/Corr.1, A/72/6 (Sect. 9), A/72/6 (Sect. 10), A/72/6 (Sect. 11), A/72/6 (Sect. 12), A/72/6 (Sect. 12)/Corr.1, A/72/6 (Sect. 13), A/72/6 (Sect. 13)/Corr.1, A/72/6 (Sect. 14), A/72/6 (Sect. 15), A/72/6 (Sect. 16), A/72/6 (Sect. 17), A/72/6 (Sect. 18), A/72/6 (Sect. 19), A/72/6 (Sect. 20), A/72/6 (Sect. 21), A/72/6 (Sect. 22), A/72/6 (Sect. 23), A/72/6 (Sect. 24), A/72/6 (Sect. 24)/Corr.1, A/72/6 (Sect. 25), A/72/6 (Sect. 26), A/72/6 (Sect. 26)/Corr.1, A/72/6 (Sect. 27), A/72/6 (Sect. 28), A/72/6 (Sect. 29), A/72/6 (Sect. 29A), A/72/6 (Sect. 29B), A/72/6 (Sect. 29C), A/72/6 (Sect. 29C)/Corr.1, A/72/6 (Sect. 29C)/Corr.2, A/72/6 (Sect. 29D), A/72/6 (Sect. 29E), A/72/6 (Sect. 29F), A/72/6 (Sect. 29G), A/72/6 (Sect. 29H), A/72/6 (Sect. 30), A/72/6 (Sect. 31), A/72/6 (Sect. 32), A/72/6 (Sect. 33), A/72/6 (Sect. 33)/Corr.1, A/72/6 (Sect. 34), A/72/6 (Sect. 35), A/72/6 (Sect. 36), A/72/6 (Income Sect. 1), A/72/6 (Income Sect. 2) and A/72/6 (Income Sect. 3).

Note: In a reference with several addenda and corrigenda, use "and" before the final symbol only.

References to items contained in a source document

References used to substantiate statements or identify items mentioned in a text should be as specific as possible, indicating the relevant paragraphs or chapter and section, annex, appendix, table or figure in the source. When the item does not correspond to the whole of the final element cited (e.g. to the entire section of the report cited), the reference should be introduced by "See". In the following example, the footnote begins with "See" because the reference is to the conclusions and recommendations that make up part of section III, not to the section as a whole.

Example:

The General Assembly,

. . .

          1. Endorses the agreed conclusions and recommendations adopted by the Working Group on the Right to Development at its sixth session;1
__________
1 See E/CN.4/2005/25, sect. III.

Several sources in one footnote

Documents issued for the same body. In a footnote containing two or more document symbols, the symbols of documents issued for the same body are normally listed in chronological and numerical order, the earliest session and lowest document (serial) number first.

Example:

The General Assembly,

          Aware that significant progress continues to be made by Member States in meeting the goals set for 2008, as reflected in the biennial reports of the Executive Director of the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime,1
__________
1 E/CN.7/2001/2, E/CN.7/2001/2/Add.1, E/CN.7/2001/2/Add.2, E/CN.7/2001/2/Add.3, E/CN.7/2001/16, E/CN.7/2003/2, E/CN.7/2003/2/Add.1, E/CN.7/2003/2/Add.2, E/CN.7/2003/2/Add.3, E/CN.7/2003/2/Add.4, E/CN.7/2003/2/Add.5 and E/CN.7/2003/2/Add.6.

Documents issued for different bodies. When documents issued for different bodies are cited in the same footnote, the symbols are normally listed alphabetically (e.g. A/ documents, E/ documents, S/ documents), chronologically and numerically, the earliest session and lowest document (serial) number first. The documents of a parent body precede those of a subsidiary body (e.g. all the A/ documents are grouped and listed before the A/C.5/ documents). Within each group, documents given limited distribution (those in which the document number is preceded by an "L") are listed after documents given general distribution.

Example:

The General Assembly,

          Having considered the relevant reports on human resources management questions,1
__________
1 A/53/955, A/54/257, A/54/279, A/54/279/Corr.1, A/54/793, A/55/57, A/55/57/Add.1, … A/55/451, A/C.5/54/2, A/C.5/54/21, A/C.5/54/L.3 and A/C.5/55/L.3.

Supplements and masthead documents cited in same footnote. When a supplement to the Official Records is cited in the same footnote as a masthead document, the supplement is normally listed first (see United Nations sources/Reports issued as supplements to the Official Records). The references in the footnote are separated by a semi-colon.

Example:

The General Assembly,

          . . .

          1. Endorses the United Nations Programme on Space Applications for 2006, as proposed to the Committee by the Expert on Space Applications and endorsed by the Committee;1
__________

1 See Official Records of the General Assembly, Sixtieth Session, Supplement No. 20 and corrigendum (A/60/20 and A/60/20/Corr.1), paras. 88 and 94; see also A/AC.105/840, sects. II and III and annex III.

Exceptions to the normal order of listing. The normal order of listing may be changed when documents or elements contained therein are mentioned in a different order in the text.

Example:

The General Assembly,

. . .

          1. Endorses the recommendation of the Committee that the Scientific and Technical Subcommittee, at its forty-fourth session:

          (a) Consider the following items in accordance with the workplans adopted by the Committee:1

(i) Space debris;

(ii) Use of nuclear power sources in outer space;

(iii) Near-Earth objects;

(iv) Space-system-based disaster management support;

(v) International Heliophysical Year 2007;

__________
1 See A/AC.105/848, annex II, para. 6, for item (i); ibid., annex III, para. 8, for item (ii); ibid., annex I, para. 20, and A/AC.105/869, annex I, para. 22, for item (iii); A/AC.105/823, annex II, para. 15, and A/AC.105/848, annex I, para. 21, for item (iv); and A/AC.105/848, annex I, para. 22, for item (v).

B.   Reports issued as supplements to the Official Records

Elements in the reference
Addenda to supplements
References to items contained in a supplement

Elements in the reference

The reports of intergovernmental bodies required to report to the General Assembly or the Economic and Social Council are issued as supplements in the Official Records series.

In resolutions and decisions, a supplement is cited in a footnote containing the following elements:

  1. Title of series (in italics)
  2. Session or year, as appropriate (in italics)
  3. Supplement number (in italics)
  4. Volume number, if any (in standard font)
  5. "and corrigendum" or "and corrigenda", if any (in standard font)
  6. Document symbol and volume number, if any (in parentheses)

The title of the report (e.g. Report of the Committee for Programme and Coordination) is not included in the footnote.

Examples:

1 Official Records of the General Assembly, Seventieth Session, Supplement No. 16 (A/70/16).

2 Official Records of the Economic and Social Council, 2005, Supplement No. 3 and corrigenda (E/2005/23, E/2005/23/Corr.1 and E/2005/23/Corr.2).

3 Official Records of the General Assembly, Seventy-first Session, Supplement No. 5, vol. V (A/71/5 (Vol. V)).

In documents and publications, supplements may be cited by giving the document symbol in either a text note or a footnote after the descriptive title of the report.

Examples:

For its consideration of the item, the Council had before it the report of the Commission on Population and Development on its fiftieth session (E/2017/25).

For its consideration of the item, the Council had before it the report of the Commission on Population and Development on its fiftieth session.1
__________
1 E/2017/25.

Supplements to the Official Records of the Economic and Social Council. The reports of subsidiary bodies of the Economic and Social Council are issued as supplements with two symbols (a Council symbol and a symbol of the subsidiary body) but only the Council symbol is given as a reference in other documentation, as shown in the preceding example.

Addenda to supplements

In references to supplements to which one or more addenda have been issued, the word "addendum" or "addenda" is included when the main report and the addendum or addenda have the same supplement number (Supplement No. 21). When an addendum is denoted by a number and a letter (Supplement No. 5A), thereby distinguishing it from the main report (Supplement No. 5), the word "addendum" is omitted from the footnote.

Examples:

Same supplement number for main report and addendum:

1 Official Records of the General Assembly, Sixty-first Session, Supplement No. 21 and addendum (A/61/21 and A/61/21/Add.1).

Addendum denoted by a number and a letter:

2 Official Records of the General Assembly, Sixty-first Session, Supplement No. 5A (A/61/5/Add.1).

References to items contained in a supplement

References to items contained in a supplement should normally indicate the chapter and section or paragraphs in which the item can be found. When the item is part of the final element cited (e.g. part of a section or paragraph) but does not correspond to the whole element, the reference should begin with "See". In the following example, the first reference is to one item (the declaration) contained in chapter I, section A, not to the section as a whole; the second reference, introduced by "see also", is not to the decision as a whole but only to the declaration contained in the decision.

Example:

The General Assembly,

           . . .

          1. Reaffirms the declaration adopted on the occasion of the 10-year review and appraisal of the Beijing Declaration and Platform for Action at the forty-ninth session of the Commission on the Status of Women;1
__________
1 See Official Records of the Economic and Social Council, 2005, Supplement No. 7 and corrigendum (E/2005/27 and E/2005/27/Corr.1), chap. I, sect. A; see also Economic and Social Council decision 2005/232.

 

C.   Sales publications

Elements in the reference
Publications issued with a symbol and sales number
Articles and chapters in a publication
Yearbooks of the International Law Commission
Publications not issued in all languages 

Elements in the reference

Most United Nations publications are issued with a sales number. They are cited in a footnote containing the elements listed below. A footnote will not necessarily contain every element listed, but the information should be presented in the order indicated.

  1. Title and subtitle (in italics)
  2. Volume number and title, if any (volume number in standard font followed by a comma; title in italics); when a multivolume work is cited as a whole, give volume numbers only
  3. Series title, letter and number, if any (optional; in standard font)
  4. "United Nations publication, Sales No. __" (in parentheses)
  5. "and addendum"/"and addenda" or "and corrigendum"/"and corrigenda", if any (in parentheses after "Sales No. __")
  6. Electronic medium, for a non-Internet source such as a CD-ROM (include version number, if any)

Title given in the text. When the title of a publication is given in the text, it is omitted from the footnote and the sales number is not enclosed in parentheses (see footnote 6 below). When a publication has not yet been issued, "forthcoming" replaces the sales number (see footnote 7).

Publications of United Nations programmes and regional commissions. Publications of United Nations programmes and regional commissions are sometimes published externally without a United Nations sales number. In such cases, the place of publication, publisher and year of publication are given in place of a sales number and the programme or regional commission is shown as author (see footnote 8). Offices and departments of the United Nations Secretariat are not given as authors.

Publications of the specialized agencies. Publications issued by the specialized agencies never have a United Nations sales number and are treated as outside sources (see Outside sources/Books and publications).

Examples:

Title and subtitle:

1 Weapons of Terror: Freeing the World of Nuclear, Biological and Chemical Arms (United Nations publication, Sales No. E.06.I.17).

Volume number and title:

2 International Trade Statistics Yearbook 2004, vol. II, Trade by Commodity (United Nations publication, Sales No. E/F.06.XVII.4).

Two volumes, different sales numbers:

3 World Population Prospects: The 2004 Revision, vol. I, Comprehensive Tables, and vol. II, Sex and Age (United Nations publications, Sales Nos. E.05.XIII.5 and E.05.XIII.6).

Publication in a series:

4 Handbook on Geospatial Infrastructure in Support of Census Activities, Studies in Methods, Series F, No. 103 (United Nations publication, Sales No. E.09.XVIII.8).

Publication issued on CD-ROM:

5 World Urbanization Prospects: The 2014 Revision – Data in Digital Form (United Nations publication, Sales No. E.14.XIII.15), CD-ROM.

Title given in text; no title in footnote:

6 United Nations publication, Sales No. E.07.II.C.1.

Publication not yet issued:

7 World Economic Situation and Prospects 2017: Update as of Mid-2017 (United Nations publication, forthcoming).

United Nations programme as author; published externally:

8 United Nations Development Programme, Human Development Report 2006: Beyond Scarcity – Power, Poverty and the Global Water Crisis (Basingstoke, United Kingdom, Palgrave Macmillan, 2006).

Publications issued with a symbol and sales number

In references to publications issued with both a document symbol and a sales number, the symbol is omitted. In the following example, the publication was issued with a sales number and the symbols E/2007/50/Rev.1 and ST/ESA/314 but neither symbol is included in the footnote.

Example:

1 World Economic and Social Survey 2007: Development in an Ageing World (United Nations publication, Sales No. E.07.II.C.1).

Note: Publications are occasionally issued with a sales number in some language versions and a symbol in others. When there is no sales number for the language version being referenced, the symbol should be used in the reference.

Articles and chapters in a publication

Articles and chapters attributed to individual authors. United Nations publications, in particular those issued as periodicals, may include articles or chapters attributed to individual authors. The following elements are included in a footnote reference:

  1. Author of article
  2. Title and subtitle of article (in quotation marks)
  3. Title and subtitle of publication (in italics)
  4. Volume and issue numbers, if any
  5. "United Nations publication, Sales No. __" (in parentheses)

Examples:

1 Frank Bovenkerk and Bashir Abou Chakra, "Terrorism and organized crime", Forum on Crime and Society, vol. 4, Nos. 1 and 2 (United Nations publication, Sales No. E.05.IV.8).

2 Ingrid Waldon, "Sex differences in infant and early childhood mortality: major causes of death and possible biological causes", Too Young to Die: Genes or Gender? (United Nations publication, Sales No. E.98.XIII.13).

Chapters not attributed to authors. When chapters are not attributed to individual authors, the chapter number is given at the end of the footnote. The title of the chapter is not normally given.

Example:

1 The World’s Women 2005: Progress in Statistics (United Nations publication, Sales No. E.05.XVII.7), chap. 4.

Yearbooks of the International Law Commission

The records of the International Law Commission are published in yearbooks issued as United Nations sales publications. References made within a yearbook to previous issues should not include the sales number. The sales number is given in all other documents and publications. In some cases, the sales number includes a part number.

Example:

1 Yearbook of the International Law Commission, 1989, vol. II, Part One (United Nations publication, Sales No. E.91.V.5 (Part I)).

Publications not issued in all languages

When a publication has been issued in one or more languages but not in the language of the text in which the reference appears, the title and sales number of a published language version can be given in the footnote reference. An appropriate explanation should be provided in the footnote. A translation of the title can be given in parentheses after the title of the published language version. The translated title is not italicized or enclosed in quotation marks. For additional information, see General instructions on footnotes and text notes/Points of style/Titles and subtitles/Works not translated.

D.   Reports of conferences

Most reports of United Nations conferences are issued as publications with a sales number but some are issued only with a symbol, which is given in place of a sales number in a reference. Conference reports are cited in a footnote containing the following elements:

  1. Title (in italics)
  2. Volume number and title, if any (volume number in standard font followed by a comma; title in italics); when a multivolume work is cited as a whole, give volume numbers only
  3. "United Nations publication, Sales No. __" or symbol (in parentheses)
  4. "and corrigendum" or "and corrigenda", if any (in parentheses after "Sales No. __") or "and [symbol]/Corr. __" (after a symbol)

The place and date of the conference are included in the title when they are shown on the cover or title page of the report.

Examples:

Report with a sales number:

1 Report of the International Conference on Financing for Development, Monterrey, Mexico, 18–22 March 2002 (United Nations publication, Sales No. E.02.II.A.7).

Report with a symbol:

2 Report of the United Nations Conference on the Illicit Trade in Small Arms and Light Weapons in All Its Aspects, New York, 9–20 July 2001 (A/CONF.192/15).

Single volume and corrigendum cited:

3 Report of the United Nations Conference on Environment and Development, Rio de Janeiro, 3–14 June 1992, vol. I, Resolutions Adopted by the Conference (United Nations publication, Sales No. E.93.I.8 and corrigendum).

Multivolume work cited as a whole:

4 2000 Review Conference of the Parties to the Treaty on the Non-Proliferation of Nuclear Weapons, Final Document, vols. I–III (NPT/CONF.2000/28 (Parts I and II), NPT/CONF.2000/28 (Part III) and NPT/CONF.2000/28 (Part IV)).

E.   Resolutions and decisions

Resolutions and decisions of the major organs
Resolutions and decisions of subsidiary bodies and United Nations conferences

Resolutions and decisions adopted by intergovernmental bodies are identified as described in Resolutions and other formal decisions of United Nations organs/System of identification.

Resolutions and decisions of the major organs

When numbered resolutions and decisions adopted by the General Assembly, Security Council or Economic and Social Council are mentioned in a text, no reference is made to the supplement in the Official Records series in which they are printed.

Decisions without numbers. Decisions of the General Assembly were not numbered until the thirty-first session, in 1976. Decisions of the Economic and Social Council were not numbered until the fifty-sixth session, in 1974. A complete reference should be provided for a decision that is not numbered. The reference should normally specify the section of the supplement containing the decision but the page number may be given when the supplement does not contain sections.

Example:

At its 1838th plenary meeting, on 17 December 1969, the General Assembly took note of that appointment.1
__________
1 Official Records of the General Assembly, Twenty-fourth Session, Supplement No. 30 (A/7630), p. 26.

Statements by the President of the Security Council. Statements by the President of the Security Council are decisions of the Council. They are issued as masthead documents and cited by document symbol (S/PRST/__/__) in a report. In resolutions other than Security Council resolutions, a reference to the Resolutions and Decisions of the Security Council is added after the document symbol.

Examples:

Statement cited in a report:

On 30 November, after hearing a briefing by the Assistant Secretary-General for Peacekeeping Operations, the Council adopted a presidential statement (S/PRST/2005/58) in which it expressed its deep concern at the persistent disagreements among the parties on the appointment of the Prime Minister.

Statement cited in a resolution:

          The General Assembly,

          Taking note of the statement by the President of the Security Council of 31 August 20011 underlining the importance of practical disarmament measures in the context of armed conflicts,
__________
1 S/PRST/2001/21; see Resolutions and Decisions of the Security Council, 1 January 2001–31 July 2002 (S/INF/57 and S/INF/57/Corr.1).

Resolutions and decisions cited in footnotes and text notes. When a resolution or decision or an item therein is mentioned in the text without the resolution or decision number, the number may be provided in a footnote or text note. The date of adoption is omitted from the reference. When a resolution or decision is cited in another resolution issued by the same body, the issuing body is not specified in the footnote.

Example:

          The General Assembly,

          Reaffirming the purposes and principles enshrined in the Universal Declaration of Human Rights,1
__________
1 Resolution 217 A (III).

Resolutions and decisions of subsidiary bodies and United Nations conferences

The first time that a resolution or decision adopted by a subsidiary body of the General Assembly or Economic and Social Council or by a United Nations conference is mentioned in the text, a reference may be given to the supplement or conference report in which the resolution or decision is printed. The same applies to items contained in or annexed to such resolutions and decisions, such as a declaration or plan of action.

Examples:

Resolution adopted by a subsidiary body, cited in a document or publication:

The Council took note of Commission on Human Rights resolution 2004/46 (see E/2004/23).

Annex to a resolution adopted by a conference, cited in a resolution:

          The General Assembly,

          Recalling the Plan of Implementation of the World Summit on Sustainable Development,1
_______________
1 Report of the World Summit on Sustainable Development, Johannesburg, South Africa, 26 August–4 September 2002 (United Nations publication, Sales No. E.03.II.A.1 and corrigendum), chap. I, resolution 2, annex.

Note: "See" is used to introduce the reference in the first example, indicating that the resolution mentioned is only one of many items contained in the text note. "See" is not used in the second example because the Plan of Implementation corresponds to the entire annex cited in the footnote.

F.   Statements and oral reports made before a United Nations body

Statements and oral reports cited in a document
Statements and oral reports cited in a resolution 

Statements and oral reports made before certain United Nations bodies are issued in a summary record (SR) or verbatim record (PV) for each meeting.

Statements and oral reports cited in a document

When statements and oral reports made at a meeting are mentioned in a report, the following information should be given in the text:

  1. Meeting number and date
  2. Title of speaker

The symbol of the summary record or verbatim record is usually given in a footnote (see examples below). The titles of speakers are omitted from a general reference to statements made in the course of the proceedings, as shown in the second example.

Examples:

At the 46th meeting, the representative of Saudi Arabia made a statement, during which he orally revised operative paragraph 43 of the draft resolution.1

_______________
1 See A/C.3/72/PV.46.

Note: Footnotes and text notes are introduced by "see" when the reference is to selected statements and oral reports summarized in a summary record or reproduced in a verbatim record rather than to the summary or verbatim record as a whole.

Series of summary records or verbatim records should normally be written out in full in a footnote:

The Fifth Committee considered the item at its 51st, 52nd, 64th and 66th meetings, on 22 and 23 May and 27 and 30 June 2006. Statements and observations made in the course of the Committee’s consideration of the item are reflected in the relevant summary records.2

_______________
2 A/C.5/60/SR.51, A/C.5/60/SR.52, A/C.5/60/SR.64 and A/C.5/60/SR.66.

However, footnotes that span several sessions and contain references to series of summary records or verbatim records may be cited as follows if including the full symbols would result in too lengthy a list: A/70/PV.180 and A/71/PV.159. See also Masthead documents above, for the similar treatment of addenda and corrigenda in references.

Statements and oral reports cited in a resolution

In the final version of a resolution or decision, a reference to a statement or an oral report should be given in a footnote containing the full symbol of the summary record or verbatim record.

Example:

         The General Assembly,

         Having examined ... the oral report of the Chair of the Working Group of the Sixth Committee on its work during the seventy-first session,1

__________
1 See A/C.6/71/SR.31.

However, as in the case of statements and oral reports cited in a document, footnotes that span several sessions and contain references to series of summary records or verbatim records may be cited as follows if including the full symbols would result in too lengthy a list:

2 See A/70/PV.180 and A/71/PV.159.

G.   Instruments in the Treaty Series

When treaties, conventions, protocols and other items published in the United Nations or League of Nations Treaty Series are cited in a footnote, which is always the case for United Nations resolutions, the following elements are included:

  1. Author (United Nations or League of Nations)
  2. "Treaty Series" (in italics)
  3. Volume
  4. Number

Examples:

1 United Nations, Treaty Series, vol. 729, No. 10485.

2 United Nations, Treaty Series, vol. 1125, Nos. 17512 and 17513.

3 League of Nations, Treaty Series, vol. XCIV, No. 2138.

In reports, it is sufficient to provide the title of the instrument, without providing a reference.

Note: Not all treaties, protocols and conventions are published in the Treaty Series. They may be contained in a document, publication or resolution.

H.   Advisory opinions, judgments and orders of the International Court
      of Justice

Advisory opinions, judgments and orders of the International Court of Justice should be cited in the style stipulated by the Court itself at the beginning of its report. For a link to reports of the Court, see Sources of information: online.

If no citation style is specified, the guidelines set out below may be followed.

Advisory opinions. Advisory opinions of the International Court of Justice issued in the I.C.J. Reports series should be cited in a footnote containing the following elements:

  1. Case name as given on first page of report (in italics; may be included in the text)
  2. "Advisory Opinion" (in italics)
  3. "I.C.J. Reports [year]" (in italics)
  4. Page on which case begins

Example:

1 Difference Relating to Immunity from Legal Process of a Special Rapporteur of the Commission on Human Rights, Advisory Opinion, I.C.J. Reports 1999, p. 62.

In resolutions, when the advisory opinion has been reproduced in a United Nations masthead document, that document alone should be cited.

Examples:

          The General Assembly,

          Recalling the advisory opinion of the International Court of Justice on the legality of the threat or use of nuclear weapons, issued on 8 July 1996,1

__________
1 A/51/218, annex.

* * *

          The General Assembly,

          . . .

          Recalling also the advisory opinion rendered on 9 July 2004 by the International Court of Justice on the legal consequences of the construction of a wall in the Occupied Palestinian Territory,2

__________
2 See A/ES-10/273 and A/ES-10/273/Corr.1.

Judgments and orders. The following elements are included in references to judgments and orders of the Court:

  1. Case name as given on first page of report (in italics)
  2. Names of parties (in italics) (e.g. Spain v. Canada)
  3. Volume title as given on first page of report (in italics)
  4. "I.C.J. Reports [year]" (in italics)
  5. Page on which case begins

Example:

3 Fisheries Jurisdiction (Spain v. Canada), Jurisdiction of the Court, Judgments, I.C.J. Reports 1998, p. 432.

I.   Conference room papers

Conference room papers, designated by "CRP" in the symbol (e.g. E/2006/CRP.4), are not normally cited because they are not available to most readers. Exceptions are made for conference room papers on which an intergovernmental body takes action or bases its discussion. Major documents issued only in the form of a conference room paper, such as the draft reports of certain intergovernmental bodies, may also be cited when necessary. Such documents are cited in the same way as masthead documents.

Conference room papers containing negotiated texts or working drafts should not be cited if the texts are to be issued in final form as masthead documents or incorporated into a report issued with an official symbol or sales number, such as the report of a United Nations conference.

Note: Conference room papers are sometimes included in a list of documents considered by an intergovernmental body in a report on its proceedings.

J.   Restricted documents

Restricted documents, designated by an "R" in the symbol (E/CN.6/2008/R.__), are not cited because they normally contain confidential information and are not available to most readers.

K.   Material on the website of an office or department

Material not issued under a document symbol
Online databases

Material not issued under a document symbol

References to material on a website that has not been issued under an official document symbol may include the following:

  1. "United Nations" (may be omitted if the rest of the elements are given in the text)
  2. Author department or office (may be given in the text)
  3. Title and/or description of material (may be given in the text)
  4. Series title and number, if any (in standard font)
  5. Date posted or last updated, if indicated
  6. "Available at" URL (in a footnote) or "see" URL (in a text note) (should be omitted if the reference is easily located through a web search)
  7. Date accessed (in parentheses), if no date is indicated on the material (optional)

If the website or the material is no longer available through the URL provided, the editor should, in consultation with the author, update the reference.

Examples:

1 United Nations, "Secretary-General stresses comprehensive, preventive actions against terrorism, violent extremism, in remarks to summit with South-East Asian nations", press release, 13 November 2017.

2 United Nations, Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs, "The humanitarian impact of the internal Palestinian divide on the Gaza Strip: June 2017", fact sheet, 23 June 2017.

3 United Nations, Department of Economic and Social Affairs, "Death and taxes", 10 November 2017.

4 United Nations, Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs, "Partners scale up cholera prevention campaigns in South Sudan", Humanitarian Bulletin: South Sudan, No. 5, 23 May 2018.

At its 13th meeting, on 9 March, the Commission took note of the moderator’s summary of the panel discussion on key policy initiatives to eliminate all forms of discrimination and violence against the girl child (see www.un.org/womenwatch/daw/csw/51sess.htm).

Online databases

Information from an online database is cited in a footnote containing the following elements:

  1. "United Nations", if not included in name of database
  2. Title of relevant section or data file, if applicable (in quotation marks)
  3. Name of database (capitalized in standard font, without quotation marks)
  4. "Available at" URL
  5. Date accessed (in parentheses)

Other information, such as a table number or specific links, may be included when appropriate. If the website or the information is no longer available through the URL provided, the editor should, in consultation with the author, update the reference.

Example:

4 United Nations, "Population density: least developed countries", World Population Prospects: The 2008 Revision Population Database. Available at https://esa.un.org/unpd/wpp (accessed on 11 March 2009).

 

 

 

 

 

 

 
     
   
 


United Nations Editorial Manual Online © 2004–2019 (New York). Prepared and maintained for the United Nations under the authority of the Chiefs of the Editing Sections/Units, Department for General Assembly and Conference Management. Mention of the names of firms and commercial products does not imply the endorsement of the United Nations. For technical or editorial enquiries, please contact the Editing Section at editingny@un.org.