Sanctions

  • Coherent US Strategy Seen Key to Effective Sanctions

    As Washington looks to punish Moscow for its invasion of Ukraine, support for Bashar al-Assad in Syria, and interference in the 2016 US elections, economic sanctions can be a useful tool, but they must fit into a coherent US strategy in order to be effective, Atlantic Council experts told US lawmakers on May 15.

    “Sanctions can be a useful, precise, and effective tool of US foreign policy, so long as they are treated as a tool to implement a clear policy and a thought-out strategy,” David Mortlock, a nonresident senior fellow in the Atlantic Council’s Global Energy Center explained.


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  • Policing Terror Finance in an Era of Great Competition

    The United States' sanctions strategy is increasingly burdened by the involvement of systemically important financial institutions and sovereign investors in global financial statecraft. In the post-9/11 world, Washington’s strategy was highly effective in pursuing non-state actors like al-Qaeda or ISIS, as well as small, rogue nations like Iran. Yet in addressing larger sovereigns like the Kremlin, US strategy has struggled to maintain the same effectiveness given the cross-border financial connections linking these entities to Western markets. As an era of great power competition among Washington, Moscow, and Beijing sets in, these foes will crowd out smaller, non-state actors, thus demanding an adequate response from the Treasury.


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  • Fried Testifies Before House Foreign Affairs on Countering a Resurgent Russia

    Statement by Ambassador Daniel Fried (retired)
    Distinguished Fellow, the Atlantic Council
    Hearing on “Countering a Resurgent Russia” 
    House Committee on Foreign Affairs
    May 1, 2019

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  • Spotlight: Next Steps with Venezuela

    Despite increased, coordinated international pressure on Venezuela’s Nicolás Maduro, he continues to cling to power. Maduro’s staying power has outlasted the Trump administration’s optimistic timeline, but, in this case, the stated goal of regime change is one worthy of perseverance. The need for a timely solution is exacerbated by the extreme humanitarian crisis – created by years of Maduro regime mismanagement – that has already prompted 3.7 million Venezuelans to flee. In order to achieve its policy objective, the Trump administration’s strategy should be broadened beyond

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  • Trump’s Inconsistent Approach to Iran Oil Waivers Means He Can’t Have His Cake and Eat it Too

    The Trump administration shocked global oil markets on April 22 with US Secretary of State Michael Pompeo’s surprise announcement that the United States would not renew any waivers for importing Iranian oil when they expire on May 2. While Pompeo noted that Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates (UAE) would increase production to match the approximate 1.1 million barrels per day (bpd) of Iranian crude that will come off the market, this will cut into global spare capacity and has already pushed Brent crude up over 3 percent over $74 as of publication.


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  • Congressional Russia Sanction Push Needs to Maximize Cooperation with Allies

    As the US Congress considers passing new sanctions to punish Russia for its aggression in Ukraine, interference in US elections, and material support for Nicolás Maduro’s regime in Venezuela, lawmakers should remain committed to a united approach with Washington’s European allies and ensure that the new legislation maximizes US cooperation with its partners, according to Atlantic Council Distinguished Ambassadorial Fellow Daniel Fried.

    Two current bills, the Defending American Security from Kremlin Aggression (DASKA) Actand the Defending Elections from Threats by Establishing Redlines (DETER) Act , have been reintroduced in the US Senate as attempts to mandate the Trump

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  • Implications of the Russia Sanctions Legislation on the Energy Sector

    On April 17, the Atlantic Council’s Global Energy Center and Global Business & Economics Program hosted an event on the implications of Russia sanctions legislation on the energy sector. Moderated by Amb. Richard Morningstar, the Atlantic Council Global Energy Center’s founding chairman, the event featured a timely and informative discussion on the status and substance of the latest US Russia sanctions legislation, how companies mitigate risks incurred by present and future US Russia sanctions legislation, and the effect of sanctions on US-European Union (EU) relations, and transatlantic cooperation more broadly. The conversation focused on two newly reintroduced bills in the US Congress: The Defending American Security from Kremlin Aggression Act (DASKAA) and the Defending Elections from Threats by Establishing Redlines Act (DETER Act.).


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  • Slavin in Al Monitor: Trump officials warn more Iran sanctions are coming


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  • Trump’s New Cuba Policy Threatens to Reignite Historic Disagreement With Key Allies

    The Trump administration broke another policy precedent with its March 4 decision to activate a decades-old US law on Cuba, ostensibly to punish Cuba for propping up Nicolás Maduro’s regime in Venezuela and for its ongoing suppression of human rights, as well as to put additional pressure on Maduro to step down. The unilateral policy decision threatens to further antagonize key US allies, particularly the European Union (EU) and Canada—both of whom have otherwise been largely consistent with the Trump administration on Venezuela policy—while likely stopping short of achieving the desired impacts on Havana and Caracas.

    For the first time since enactment of the 1996 Cuban Liberty and Democratic Solidarity (...
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  • Using Sanctions Against Human Rights Abusers and Kleptocrats


    On Tuesday, February 26, the Atlantic Council’s Global Business & Economics Program’s Economic Sanctions Initiative hosted a public discussion featuring Ms. Andrea Gacki, Director of the US Treasury Department’s Office of Foreign Assets Control (OFAC), on the Global Magnitsky Act’s uses, misuses, and lessons for business.


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