A National Security Council (NSC) is usually an executive branch governmental body responsible for coordinating policy on national security issues and advising chief executives on matters related to national security. An NSC is often headed by a national security advisor and staffed with senior-level officials from military, diplomatic, intelligence, law enforcement and other governmental bodies. The functions and responsibilities of an NSC at the strategic state level are different from those of the United Nations Security Council, which is more of a diplomatic forum.
Occasionally a nation will be ruled by a similarly named body, such as "the National Security Committee" or "Council for National Security". These bodies are often a result of the establishment or preservation of a military dictatorship (or some other national crisis), do not always have statutory approval, and are usually intended to have transitory or provisional powers. See also: coup d'état.
Some nations may have a similar body which is not formally part of the executive government. For example, the Central National Security Commission in China is an organ of the Communist Party of China, the sole ruling party, rather than an organ of the executive government.
NSCs by country
- Australia: National Security Committee
- Armenia: National Defense Council
- Bangladesh: Armed Forces Division
- Brazil: National Defense Council
- Canada: National Security Advisor (Canada)
- People's Republic of China: Central National Security Commission of the Communist Party of China
- Croatia: National Security Council (Croatia)
- Czech Republic: National Security Council of the Czech Republic
- East Germany: National Defense Council of East Germany
- Egypt: National Security Council
- Estonia: National Defence Council
- Fiji: National Security Council (Fiji)
- France: Secretariat-General for National Defence and Security
- Georgia: National Security Council of Georgia
- Germany: Bundessicherheitsrat (Federal Security Council), prior to 1969 Bundesverteidigungsrat (Federal Defense Council)
- Greece: Government Council for Foreign Affairs and Defence
- Ghana: National Security Council (Ghana)
- India: National Security Council (India)
- Iran, Islamic Republic of: Supreme National Security Council
- Ireland (Republic of): National Security Committee (Ireland)
- Israel: Ministerial Committee on National Security Affairs (policy co-ordination functions); National Security Council (advisory functions)
- Japan: National Security Council (Japan) (previously Security Council)
- Korea, North: National Defense Commission (Democratic People's Republic of Korea)
- Korea, South: National Security Office
- Malaysia: National Security Division
- Mongolia: National Security Council of Mongolia 
- Myanmar: National Defence and Security Council
- New Zealand: Cabinet National Security Committee
- Pakistan: National Security Council (Pakistan)
- Palestinian Authority: Palestinian National Security Council
- Philippines: National Security Council (Philippines)
- Poland: National Security Council (Poland)
- Romania: Supreme Council of National Defense (Romania)
- Russian Federation: Security Council of the Russian Federation
- Saudi Arabia: National Security Council (Saudi Arabia)
- Slovenia: National Security Council (Slovenia)
- Spain: National Security Council (Spain)
- Sri Lanka: National Security Council of Sri Lanka
- Republic of China (Taiwan): National Security Council (Taiwan)
- Thailand: National Security Council (Thailand)
- Turkey: National Security Council (Turkey)
- Ukraine: National Security and Defense Council of Ukraine
- United Kingdom: National Security Council (United Kingdom)
- United States: United States National Security Council
- Uzbekistan: National Security Council under the President of Uzbekistan
- Vietnam: Council for National Defense and Security
- NSD Chief details security duties, Thai visit, Disaster Management (Report). WikiLeaks. 30 November 2006. Retrieved 19 August 2013.
- "National Security and Intelligence role created". Scoop Media. New Zealand. 6 October 2014. Retrieved 7 October 2014.
- "Outline of security portfolio responsibilities" (PDF). Scoop Media. 6 October 2014. Retrieved 7 October 2014.
- Dr Joe Devanny & Josh Harris. "The National Security Council: national security at the centre of government". Institute for Government & King's College London. Retrieved 6 November 2014.
- "National Security Council". Gov.uk. Retrieved 6 November 2014.