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Sanctions and the Search for Security: Challenges to UN Action

David Cortright and George A. Lopez, with Linda Gerber
Sanctions and the Search for Security: Challenges to UN Action
ISBN: 978-1-58826-053-6
ISBN: 978-1-58826-078-9
2002/249 pages/LC: 2002017819
A project of the International Peace Institute

"[A] rigorous, timely and sobering account of UN Security Council-imposed sanctions."—Ross H. McLeod, Australian Journal of Political Science

"Essential reading for anyone interested in the future of multilateral economic sanctions."—Norrin M. Ripsman, International Journal


Following on the publication of The Sanctions Decade—lauded as the definitive history and accounting of United Nations sanctions in the 1990s—David Cortright and George Lopez continue their collaboration to examine the changing context and meaning of sanctions and the security dilemmas that the Security Council now faces.

Cortright and Lopez note that, despite widespread disagreement about the effectiveness of UN sanctions and the need for reform, the Security Council continues to impose sanctions, and it maintains ongoing measures in eight countries. Exploring the dynamics of recent developments, the authors assess a range of new multilateral approaches to sanctions and economic statecraft, review the heated debate over the humanitarian impact of sanctions, and consider the increasingly important role of NGOs in UN policymaking. They conclude with a framework for future policy, as well as specific recommendations for enhancing the viability of "smart sanctions" strategies.


David Cortright is president of the Fourth Freedom Forum and research fellow at the Joan B. Kroc Institute for International Peace Studies, University of Notre Dame. George A. Lopez is vice president of the Academy for International Conflict Management and Peacebuilding at the US Institute of Peace.


  • Foreword—William Graham.
  • Foreword—David M. Malone.
  • Themes and Trends of the Sanctions Era.
  • The Iraq Quagmire.
  • Smart Sanctions, Limited Impacts: United Nations Policy in Afghanistan.
  • Success in the Making? The Evolution of U.N. Sanctions in Angola.
  • Sanctions and Regional Security: The Crisis in West Africa.
  • Following the Money Trail: Targeted Financial Sanctions.
  • Carrots and Sticks for Controlling Terrorism.
  • Beyond Symbolism: Travel and Aviation Sanctions.
  • Sanctions Sans Commitment: Arms Embargoes.
  • The Viability of Commodity Sanctions: The Case of Diamonds.
  • Reform or Retreat? The Future of U.N. Sanctions Policy.