European Union Adopts a Global Human Rights Sanctions Regime

The Council of European Union (EU) adopted decision and a regulation to establish a ‘Global Human Rights Sanctions Regime’ on December 7, 2020. This is for the first time that EU has come up with the framework which allows it to target individuals, entities and bodies responsible for, involved in or associated with serious human rights violations and abuses worldwide irrespective of the fact where the violation occurred. This regulation will apply to both State and Non-state actors.


The preventive measure will provide for a travel ban of individuals and freezing of funds applying to individuals and entities. Additionally, EU members including entities are forbidden from transferring any funds to people or entities listen in the sanctioned list, whether directly or indirectly.


The preventive measures apply to the acts of genocide, crimes against humanity and other human rights violations or abuses, i.e., torture, slavery, extrajudicial killing, arbitrary arrests or detentions. Moreover, human rights violations and abuses falling under the sanction regime is widespread, systematic violation or abuses under the umbrella of Article 21 of TEU. The council of EU will work on the proposal of EU member States to establish, review and amend the sanctions list.

Source: European Council

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