The UN Security Council applies sanctions in the context of its primary responsibility for the maintenance and restoration of international peace and security under Chapter VII of the United Nations Charter. There are currently 13 UNSC sanctions regimes in force which focus on supporting political settlement of conflicts, nuclear non-proliferation, and counter-terrorism. Each sanctions regime is administered by a Sanctions Committee chaired by a non-permanent member of the Security Council. In addition, there are 9 monitoring groups, teams and panels that support the work of the Sanctions Committees.

The Security Council may decide what measures not involving the use of armed force are to be employed to give effect to its decisions, and it may call upon the Members of the United Nations to apply such measures. These may include complete or partial interruption of economic relations and of rail, sea, air, postal, telegraphic, radio, and other means of communication, and the severance of diplomatic relations.

Article 41 UN Charter

The UN Security Council decides and implements sanctions measures, that do not involve the use of armed force, under Article 41 of the UN Charter, to maintain or restore international peace and security. Since 1966, the Security Council has established 26 sanctions regimes, in Southern Rhodesia, South Africa, the former Yugoslavia, Haiti, Iraq, Angola, Sierra Leone, Somalia, Eritrea, Liberia, DRC, Côte d’Ivoire, Sudan (2), Lebanon, DPRK, Iran, Libya (2), Guinea-Bissau, CAR, Yemen and South Sudan, as well as against ISIL (Da’esh) and Al-Qaida and the Taliban (2).

Our Expertise

PIL Advisory Group assists on sanctions-related matters such as:

  • Design, implementation and review of UN sanctions regimes;
  • International legal limitations on UN sanctions;
  • Assessment of human rights impacts of sanctions;
  • Interaction with the Focal point for de-listing and the Office of the Ombudsperson to the ISIL (Da’esh) & Al-Qaida Sanctions Committee.

Our Experts

Daniel H. Joyner

Pierre-Emmanuel Dupont