United Nations Trust Territories
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United Nations Trust Territories
Palau District Police greet the UN Visiting Mission to the Trust Territory of the Pacific Islands (1973)
United Nations trust territories were the successors of the remaining League of Nations mandates, and came into being when the League of Nations ceased to exist in 1946. All of the trust territories were administered through the United Nations Trusteeship Council. The concept is distinct from a territory temporarily and directly governed by the United Nations.
The one territory not turned over was South-West Africa, which South Africa insisted remained under the League of Nations Mandate. It eventually gained independence in 1990 as Namibia. The main objection was that the trust territory guidelines required that the lands be prepared for independence and majority rule.
Trust territories (and administering powers)
UN trust territories by trustee
Modern successor states of UN trust territories.
Modern states composed solely of former trust territories
Modern states composed partially of former trust territories
Former German Schutzgebiete
All these territories previously were League of Nations mandates.
- The Trust Territory of the Cameroons under French administration (French Cameroons): Achieved independence as the Republic of Cameroon in 1960.
- The Trust Territory of the Cameroons under British administration (British Cameroons): Somewhat smaller than the French Cameroons, this territory was administered in two parts (Northern Cameroons and Southern Cameroons). Following a plebiscite, Northern Cameroons became part of Nigeria in May 1961 and Southern Cameroons joined the Republic of Cameroon in October 1961.
- The Territory of New Guinea (Australia): The north-eastern section of this island had been a League of Nations mandate, the south-eastern section had been Australian before World War I; after World War II, the two were combined into a unified entity for administrative purposes, although the legal distinction between the Territory of Papua and the Territory of New Guinea was maintained. In 1975, the two entities were legally unified and granted independence as Papua New Guinea. The western half of the island, formerly Dutch and now part of Indonesia, was never part of either territory.
- The Trust Territory of Ruanda-Urundi (Belgium, effectively linked to the Belgian Congo): Separately gained independence in 1962 as Rwanda and Burundi.
- The Trust Territory of Tanganyika (United Kingdom): Granted independence in 1961. Federated with the former British protectorate Zanzibar in 1964 to form Tanzania.
- The Trust Territory of Togoland under French administration (French Togoland): Became independent as Togo in 1960.
- The Trust Territory of Togoland under British administration (British Togoland): This territory was merged in 1956 with the British colony of the Gold Coast, which was granted independence as Ghana in 1957.
- The Trust Territory of Western Samoa (New Zealand): Granted independence in 1962, known since 1997 simply as Samoa.
Former German and/or Japanese colonies
These territories were also former League of Nations mandates.
Former Italian possessions
Proposed trust territories