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New Analytical Categories for Assessing EU Sanctions


There is considerable debate on why are sanctions imposed, but little agreement so far. While the only consensus is that sanctions are aimed at changing the behaviour of a target, in fact, international sanctions can also be imposed to constrain actors or send signals. Since the creation of the Union in 1992, the EU has imposed 21 autonomous restrictive measures that are difficult to understand and compare without the proper analytical tools. The application of a tripartite taxonomy of the purpose of sanctions to the cases of the EU sanctions on Belarus, Zimbabwe and Uzbekistan is used to illustrate the differences and to set guidelines for a better understanding of international sanctions.