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Coercive Diplomacy, Sanctions and International Law


The role of sanctions as instruments of coercive diplomacy has undergone fundamental changes in the aftermath of the Cold War. Not only have States made larger recourse to such measures, but new regimes of "smart" and "targeted" sanctions have been developed. On 13 February 2015, the Istituto Affari Internazionali (IAI) organised an international conference in Rome on this issue, with the support of Eni and Friedrich-Ebert-Stiftung. The questions addressed throughout the conference were manifold. They included the role of sanctions as instruments of coercive diplomacy; the compatibility and legitimacy of sanctions imposed by States and international and regional organisations; the connection between sanctions and individual rights; the impact of sanctions on existing treaties and contracts; the impact of sanctions on non-State actors; the practice of the European Union; the extraterritorial effects of national legislation implementing sanctions; and the effectiveness of sanctions in contributing to the maintenance of international peace and security. The debate delved into a number of theoretical arguments and combined different perspectives from international law and international relations scholars. The conference thus managed to illustrate the current state of the academic debate over sanctions and confirmed the evolving nature of the practice in this field, offering an interesting overview for public and private stakeholders, academics and practitioners alike.

Report of the international conference on "Coercive Diplomacy, Sanctions and International Law" organised in Rome on 13 February 2015 by the Istituto Affari Internazionali (IAI), within the framework of the project "Coercive Diplomacy in Global Governance: The Role of Sanctions".

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