Iran brings ICJ claim against USA for new Iran sanctions

ICJ.jpgIran brought proceedings against the USA yesterday at the International Court of Justice (ICJ) in the Hague. The ICJ’s press release states that Iran’s claim alleges (in summary) that the US decision to re-impose sanctions violates the 1955 Treaty of Amity between the US and Iran in various respects, and asks the Court to order the US to terminate its sanctions and compensate Iran, and to grant “provisional measures” preventing the US from imposing its sanctions due to come into force in August.  Iran’s application is here and its request for provisional measures here.

UN lifts sanctions on 2 Iraqi insurance companies

UNSCLast week (13 July 2018), the UN Security Council removed 2 entities from its Iraq sanctions list: ‘Iraqi Life Insurance Company’ and ‘National Insurance Company’. As a result, they will no longer be subject to UN asset freezing measures. UN press release here.

UN renews South Sudan sanctions & designates 2 individuals


Last week (13 July 2018), the UN Security Council adopted UNSC Resolution 2428 (2018), which:


  1. Extends UN sanctions on South Sudan until 31 May 2019 (includes an arms embargo and targeted measures, namely, asset freezes and travel bans); and
  1. Designates 2 “high-ranking” individuals to the South Sudan sanctions list: Malek Reuben Riak Rengu and Paul Malong Awan (travel bans and asset freezes imposed). UN press release here and UK OFSI Notice here.

US lifts ban on ZTE after payment of $1.4billion settlement

ZTE2Last week (13 July 2018), the US Department of Commerce announced that Chinese telecoms company ZTE (Zhongxing Telecommunications Equipment Corporation and ZTE Kangxun Telecommunications Ltd) had placed $400 million in escrow at a US bank and, as a result, the Department had lifted the 7-year denial order on ZTE pursuant to the $1.4 billion settlement agreement approved last month (see our previous blog for the full details of that new agreement).

US rejects EU’s request for Iran sanctions exemptions

US Flag.jpgUS Secretary of State Mike Pompeo and Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin have written a letter rejecting the EU’s request for exemptions to the US Iran sanctions that will be re-imposed in August and November 2018 after the US decision to withdraw from the JCPOA. The letter states that the “[US] will seek to provide unprecedented financial pressure on the Iranian regime”.

The EU had requested exemptions in a joint letter signed by the E3 last month (summarised in our previous blog). They sought carve-puts for finance, energy and healthcare. The US letter states that the US will only allow carve-outs if necessary for US national security or humanitarian purposes.

EU adds Algerian national to ISIL & A-Q sanctions list

Terrorist.jpgThe EU has added Algerian national Rabah Tahari to its ISIL (Da’esh) and Al-Qaeda sanctions list (asset freeze imposed). See Council Decision (CFSP) 2018/1000, Council Implementing Regulation (EU) 2018/999, and UK OFSI Notice.

This is the second person to be designated under these sanctions. French national Fabien Clain was the first to be designated in February 2018 (previous blog).

EU adopts targeted sanctions framework against Maldives

EU1Today, the EU announced that it has adopted a framework to impose targeted sanctions (travel ban and asset freeze) against those responsible for “undermining the rule of law or obstructing an inclusive political solution in the Maldives”, as well as those responsible for “serious human rights violations”. See Council Decision (CFSP) 2018/1006 and Council Regulation (EU) 2018/1001.

This decision is a direct follow up to the EU conclusions (26 February 2018) adopted in respect of the situation in the Maldives (previous blog).

EU implements UN de-listing of Iraq’s State Organisation of Grain

EU4Earlier this week, the UN Security Council removed the ‘General Establishment for Grain Trading’ from its Iraq sanctions list (previous blog).

Yesterday, the EU implemented this UN delisting by adopting Commission Implementing Regulation (EU) 2018/979. As a result, the body will no longer be subject to EU asset freezing measures. UK OFSI Notice here.