The EU Global Human Rights Sanctions Regime: Between Self Help and Global Governance
International Community Law Review (Advance Article published online, 20 Dec 2021)
26 Pages Posted: 22 Dec 2021
Date Written: 2021
By adopting a Global Human Rights Sanctions regime, the European Union took a new step in leveraging its power to respond to human rights violations globally. The regime has a general scope, and targets both state and non-state actors. This paper shows that this regime occupies a tension zone between two competing approaches to sanctions: a self-help approach that perceives sanctions as deriving authority from states’ sovereignty and subservient to their foreign policy, and a global governance approach that views sanctions as deriving authority from and bound by the objectives of specific international legal regimes they enforce. The tension between these approaches comes into stark view when constructing the listing criteria and policy objectives of the sanctions, which determine the scope of targets and duration of measures. Whether and how subsequent practice resolves this tension will be determined by certain legislative and interpretive moves by the EU Council and Court.
Keywords: Sanctions, European Union, Human Rights, Self-Interest, Global Governance, Obligations Erga Omnes
Suggested Citation: Suggested Citation