The trusteeship system was supervised by the UN Trusteeship Council, members of the United Nations administering trust territories and an equal number of other member nations, including all permanent members of the Security Council not administering such territories. Each territory was governed by the provisions of a trusteeship agreement. Agreements covering nonstrategic areas were approved by the General Assembly and strategic areas were approved by the Security Council. Unlike territories under mandate, trusteeship territories could be fortified. The powers of the administering state included full legislative, administrative, and judicial authority and, in certain cases, the right to treat the territory as if it were part of the administering state. Each year the Trusteeship Council submitted to the responsible state a detailed questionnaire concerning each territory, with special emphasis on measures taken to increase self-government and educational opportunities. The council considered petitions from inhabitants of the territories and periodically made inspection tours. It met at least once a year and by majority vote (not subject to veto) adopted recommendations.
In 1949 the General Assembly, by virtue of the League of Nations mandate over Palestine, declared Jerusalem a trust territory under the administration of the whole United Nations. Because of the opposition of Israel and Jordan, the two occupying states, the implementation of this recommendation had to be postponed indefinitely. With the independence in 1994 of Palau (in free association with the United States), the self-governing status of all territories was established and the trusteeship agreements for those territories terminated. Of the earlier trusteeships, Italian Somaliland joined British Somaliland, becoming Somalia (1960); British Togoland joined Ghana (1956), and French Togoland became Togo (1960); French Cameroons became Cameroon (1960), joined by the southern British Cameroons (1961); and the northern British Cameroons joined Nigeria (1961). Tanganyika (now part of Tanzania) gained its independence in 1961, Samoa in 1962 (as Western Samoa, 1962-97), and Ruanda-Urundi became the states Rwanda and Burundi in 1962. Nauru became independent in 1968, New Guinea joined with Papua to become Papua New Guinea in 1975, and the Pacific Islands territory (Palau excepted) achieved commonwealth status (Northern Mariana Islands) or a independence under a compact of free association (Marshall Islands and the Federated States of Micronesia) with the United States in 1986.
See J. N. Murray, Jr., The United Nations Trusteeship System (1957); C. E. Toussaint, The Trusteeship System of the United Nations (1957); A. G. Mezerik, ed., Colonialism and the United Nations (1964).
Since the 18th cent. coastal states have been held to have jurisdiction over unenclosed waters for 3 nautical mi (3.45 mi/5.55 km) from the low water line, a measure originally derived from the distance of a cannon shot. In the case of a bay up to 24 mi (39 km) wide, a line drawn from one enclosing point to the other marked the outer limit of territorial jurisdiction. A broader zone of jurisdiction to combat smuggling has long been claimed by various states, as by the United States during prohibition.
Merchant ships of all flags have the right of "innocent passage" in a nation's territorial waters; the rights of nonbelligerent foreign warships in this zone, and the extent of the jurisdiction of the coastal nation's courts over ships passing through and incidents in the zone, have long been matters of debate. Fishing and mineral extraction within the zone are entirely within the control of the coastal nation. In the 20th cent., coastal nations progressively widened their claims over offshore waters, especially in the face of competition from foreign fishing fleets and in anticipation of rich oil, gas, and mineral finds on the continental shelf. The UN-sponsored Law of the Sea Treaty, which went into effect in 1994, codified territorial waters of 12 nautical mi (13.8 mi/22.2 km) and an exclusive economic zone of 200 nautical mi (230 mi/370 km). In 1999, U.S. agencies were empowered by presidential proclamation to enforce American law up to 24 miles (39 km) offshore, doubling the previous limit.
Seats were formed by the:
Most seats gave up their autonomous status and military traditions in late medieval times and paid tax instead.