Flags avenue

Photo Essay: Flags at UN Headquarters
The United Nations Headquarters resides in the heart of Manhattan, covering six blocks along First Avenue, from 42nd to 48th streets, now renowned for housing one of the most prominent landmarks in global diplomacy.
Photo Essay: Flags at UN Headquarters
Photo Essay: Flags at UN Headquarters
As delegates and staffers gear up to tackle another day at the Headquarters, a quiet yet stirring tradition unfolds: the raising of flags representing all Member States.
Photo Essay: Flags at UN Headquarters
When weather conditions are favourable (above freezing conditions,) the flags begin their ascent at 8am—sharp. With steady hands and unwavering resolve, UN Security officers undertake the task of hoisting the flags of the 193 Member States.
Photo Essay: Flags at UN Headquarters
Photo Essay: Flags at UN Headquarters
Each UN Member State is assigned its own place in the alphabetical lineup from north to south, from Afghanistan to Zimbabwe. All of them find representation in this symbolic display of unity. There are additional poles for the flags o two non-member observer States: the Holy See and the State of Palestine.
Photo Essay: Flags at UN Headquarters
Yet, the choreography doesn't conclude with this metaphor aiming for an ideal global harmony. Throughout the day, these flags stand fluttering sentinel over bustling First Avenue, embodying the very essence of the UN's identity and mission.
Photo Essay: Flags at UN Headquarters
Photo Essay: Flags at UN Headquarters
When the clock strikes 4 pm, it's time for the flags to be lowered. Once again, the dedication and diligence displayed by the Security officers infuse the front of the campus with a sense of purpose, transforming a simple street scene into a significant stage for global affairs.
Photo Essay: Flags at UN Headquarters
For those who seek to witness this unique reminder that no nation stands alone in the pursuit of a brighter world, there's no better time than a sunny winter morning or a balmy spring afternoon when this routine but meaningful ritual unfolds.
Photo Essay: Flags at UN Headquarters
Photo Essay by UN Photo/Manuel Elías