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The Efficacy of Targeted Sanctions in Enforcing Compliance with International Law

  • Alexandra Hofer (a1)
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In the international legal order, sanctions are valued for their coercive and stigmatizing functions. Through the imposition of financial or other costs, these measures seek to induce compliance with international law by those who are targeted. They also aim to signal the sender's commitment to the violated norm and stigmatize an actor responsible for wrongful behavior. In light of these functions, this essay examines the factors to assess when evaluating the efficacy of unilateral targeted sanctions in enforcing international law. The issue is relevant not only for political scientists, but also for international lawyers interested in ensuring compliance with international norms.

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This is an Open Access article, distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution licence (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/), which permits unrestricted re-use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.
References
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1 Francesco Giumelli, The Purposes of Targeted Sanctions, in Targeted Sanctions: The Impacts and Effectiveness of United Nations Action 38, 46 (Thomas J. Biersteker et al. eds., 2016).

2 Oona Hathaway & Scott Shapiro, Outcasting: Enforcement in Domestic and International Law, 121 Yale L.J. 252 (2011); see also Oona Hathaway & Scott Shapiro, The Internationalists: How a Radical Plan to Outlaw War Remade the World ch. 16 (2017) (discussing outcasting, including in relation to the recent measures against Russia).

4 This is generally the case when the purpose of the sanction is to influence state behavior. See, e.g., Richard Nephew, The Art of Sanctions: A View from the Field (2018).

6 Gaetano Arangio-Ruiz (Special Rapporteur), Second Report on State Responsibility, UN Doc. A/CN.4/425 at 1-3, 7, paras. 3-4 (1992).

7 James Crawford (Special Rapporteur), Fourth Report on State Responsibility: The Origin of International Responsibility, UN Doc. A/CN.4/517 at para. 16 (1970).

8 Draft Articles on State Responsibility for Internationally Wrongful Acts, 2 Y.B. Int'l L. Comm'n 129 paras. 1, 6 & 7 & pp. 130–31 (2001).

9 David Cortright & George A. Lopez, Introduction: Assessing Smart Sanctions, in Smart Sanctions: Targeting Economic Statecraft 1-22 (David Cortright & George A. Lopez eds., 2002).

10 See Michael Brzoska, Research of Effectiveness of International Sanctions, in Studying Effectiveness in International Relations: A Guide for Students and Scholars 143, 157 (Hendrik Hegemann et al. eds., 2013).

11 Portela, supra note 5, at 46.

12 Id. at 154.

13 Hathaway & Shapiro, supra note 2. Hathaway and Shapiro also warn, however, that “you cannot outcast a voluntary outcast.” Id. at 340; see also Moshe Hirsch, Invitation to the Sociology of International Law 178–80 (2015).

15 Portela, supra note 5, at 37–38; Kimberly Ann Elliott, The Impacts of United Nations Targeted Sanctions, in Targeted Sanctions, supra note 1, at 172–89.

16 Jacques E.C. Hymans, The Psychology of Nuclear Proliferation: Identity, Emotions and Foreign Policy ch. 2 (2006) (discussing leaders’ national identity conceptions and how these give rise to a specific cognitive and emotional effect, which will in turn generate different actions and foreign policy choices).

17 Robin Marwika, Emotional Choices: How the Logic of Affect Shapes Coercive Diplomacy (2018) (using the “logic of affect” to study how individual leaders respond to coercive diplomacy).

19 Zarakol, supra note 14.

22 Mark Daniel Jaeger, Constructing Sanctions: Rallying Around the Target in Zimbabwe, 29 Cambridge Rev. Int'l Aff. 952, 960–61 (2016).

24 Kim Richard Nossal, International Sanctions as International Punishment, 43 Int'l Org. 301, 308 (1989). But see Lang, supra note 23, at 81–82.

25 See supra note 8 and accompanying text.

26 Elisabeth Zoller, Peaceful Unilateral Remedies: An Analysis of Countermeasures 58–62, 63 (1984).

27 Armin Falk et al., Testing Theories of Fairness—Intentions Matter, 62 Games & Econ. Behav. 287, 299–300 (2008).

28 Reinhard Wolf, Political Emotions as Public Processes: Analyzing Transnational Ressentiments in Discourses, in Researching Emotions in International Relations: Methodological Perspectives on the Emotional Turn 231-54 (Maéva Clémaend & Eric Sangar eds., 2018).

29 Zarakol, supra note 14, at 8.

30 See Brzoska, supra note 10; Consider also the results provided on UN targeted sanctions by Thomas J. Biersteker et al., The effectiveness of United Nations targeted sanctions, in Targeted Sanctions, supra note 1, at 233–245.

31 Brzoska, supra note 10, at 143-44 (quoting David Baldwin, The Sanctions Debate and the Logic of Choice, 24 Int'l Sec. 80 (1999)).

32 See Hofer, supra note 21; see also Alexandra Hofer, Negotiating International Public Policy Through the Adoption and Contestation of Sanctions, Revue Belge de Droit Int'l 440 (2017).

34 Baldwin, supra note 31, at 88.

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