United Nations Sanctions

  • Margaret P. Doxey


Despite the elaborate enforcement provisions of Chapter VII of the Charter, and forty years of life, the UN record of sanctioning is sparse. As far as mandatory sanctions are concerned, the only important case is Rhodesia (now Zimbabwe); a minor instance is the embargo on arms sales to South Africa which has been in force since 1977. Other measures have been adopted voluntarily, pursuant to recommendations made by UN organs. In the Korean case the Security Council made the initial recommendations for military measures and there have also been Security Council recommendations for a ban on the sale of arms to Portugal for use in its overseas territories, on arms sales to Rhodesia prior to the imposition of mandatory sanctions and for voluntary economic sanctions against South Africa. In other instances the General Assembly has been the source of encouragement for sanctions imposition. In 1946 it recommended that members should sever diplomatic relations with the Franco regime because of its pro-Axis stand during the Second World War, and subsequently there were recommendations in respect of North Korea and the People’s Republic of China, but the main focus of attention has been Southern Africa: Portugal till 1974; Rhodesia until 1980, and South Africa as a continuing issue.


Security Council British Government Economic Sanction Security Council Resolution South African Government 
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Copyright information

© Margaret P. Doxey 1987

Authors and Affiliations

  • Margaret P. Doxey
    • 1
  1. 1.Trent UniversityCanada

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