International sanctions legislation in the U.S., EU and UK: a comparative study

International sanctions legislation in the U.S., EU and UK:
a comparative study

Article received: 01.06.2022. Accepted: 02.09.2022
DOI: 10.17976/jpps/2022.06.11

For citation:

Arapova E.Ya., Kudinov A.S. International sanctions legislation in the U.S., EU and UK: a comparative study. – Polis. Political Studies. 2022. No. 6. P. 151-165. (In Russ.).


In recent years, unilateral restrictive measures have become a widespread instrument of foreign policy, and the process of their legalization has sharply accelerated. The article compares the sanctions legislation in the US, the EU and the UK in relation to the countries’ political interests and priorities. The authors carried out a comparative analysis of sanctions areas and targeting, differences in their approaches to “humanitarian exemptions”, the level of judicial control, as well as sub-sanctioned jurisdictions that predetermine the effects of sanctions not only for the targets, but also for third countries and actors. Today, the harmonization of the US, EU and UK sanctions regimes is becoming more and more obvious. The US sanctions course led to the formalization of similar regimes in the EU and the UK, which dealt with chemical weapons, human rights and cyber security. At the same time, the EU does not allow its members to use sanctions as a tool of economic competition, while the US sanctions legislation is based on the “threats to national security” criterion (in the broad sense), which has no direct link to international law. The EU has a relatively higher level of judicial control over the compilation of sanctions lists. While it was up until recently in line with the EU take on sanctions, the UK, has recently expanded the interpretation of the British Nexus, making its sanctions policy increasingly in line with the American approach, as reflected by the gradual replication of the practice of secondary sanctions. 

international sanctions, sanctions legislation, USA, European Union, Great Britain, comparative law, humanitarian exceptions to sanctions, extraterritoriality, appeal of sanctions.


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Content No. 6, 2022

See also:

Korgun I.A., Toloraya G.D.,
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Bartenev V.I.,
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Timofeev I.N.,
The U.S. Sanctions Against Iran: Experience and Eventual Implications. – Polis. Political Studies. 2018. No4

Timofeev I.N.,
“Sanctions for Sanctions Violation”: U.S. Department of Treasury Enforcement Actions against Financial Sector. – Polis. Political Studies. 2020. No6

Suvakovic U.,
Political parties as traditional mechanisms of representation in modern societies. – Polis. Political Studies. 2010. No2



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