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New DIFP exhibition in National Archives of Ireland: Ireland joins the UN, December 1955

Our December exhibition co-curated with the National Archives of Ireland looks at Ireland’s accession to the United Nations in December 1955

On 14 December 1955 Ireland became the 63rd member of the United Nations (UN). The documents on display in our December exhibition co-curated with the National Archives of Ireland tell the story of Ireland’s admission to the UN in an era of Cold War tension. Ireland’s first steps in the United Nations were shaped by the state’s profound anti-communism, its support for the UN charter and a belief in a rules-based international system. Since 1955 through involvement in UN peacekeeping missions, three temporary terms on the United Nations Security Council as well as principled engagement with the wide range of issues facing the global order, support for the United Nations remains a strong and distinctive feature of Irish foreign policy.

The exhibition is on display throughout December 2019 in the lobby of the National Archives of Ireland, Bishop Street, Dublin 8, which is open from 9.30am to 5pm Monday to Friday. The documents on display can also be viewed online here.

Read and download our booklet on Ireland’s admission to the UN, originally produced to mark sixty years of Irish UN membership, and available here via the Digital Repository of Ireland.

Above: The telegram providing official confirmation to the Department of External Affairs in Dublin that, after a nine-year wait due to a Soviet veto of its 1946 application, Ireland had at last been admitted to the United Nations, 14 December 1955 (National Archives of Ireland).