The EU has extended its Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC) sanctions for 1 year until 12 December 2019. The measures comprise an arms embargo, as well as a targeted asset freeze and travel ban on 14 individuals “engaging in or providing support for acts that undermine the peace, stability or security of the DRC”. See Council Decision (CFSP) 2018/1940, Council Implementing Regulation (EU) 2018/1931, and EU Press Release.
At today’s EU Foreign Affairs Council meeting, the EU adopted Council Decision (CFSP) 2018/1930 and Council Implementing Regulation (EU) 2018/1929, which adds 9 people to its Russia sanctions list targeting “actions undermining or threatening the territorial integrity, sovereignty and independence of Ukraine” (asset freezes and travel bans). The individuals were listed for “their involvement in the so‑called ‘elections’ in the so‑called ‘Donetsk People’s Republic’ and ‘Luhansk People’s Republic’”. According to the EU Press Release, the EU “considers these “elections” illegal and illegitimate and does not recognise them”.
The Council will also be discussing today whether new sanctions should be imposed on those involved in the recent escalation in the Sea of Azov of Russian forces against Ukrainian ships, and whether to adopt a new sanctions regime targeting gross violations of human rights globally, similar to the US Magnitsky Act. See Meeting Agenda.
At last week’s G20 Summit in Buenos Aires, Argentina (30 November), the President of the EU Council, Donald Tusk, stated that given the recent “escalation in the Sea of Azov” of Russian forces against Ukrainian ships, he was “sure that the EU [would] roll over the sanctions against Russia in December”, namely, the measures targeting the financial, energy and defence sectors of the Russian economy (which are due to expire on 31 January 2019). No reference was made as to whether EU leaders were looking to increase the scope of these sanctions.
The sectoral sanctions were originally introduced in July 2014 (and strengthened in September 2014) for 1 year in response to Russia’s actions “destabilising the situation in Ukraine”. The sanctions have been renewed every 6 months since adoption.
The following countries have aligned themselves with that Decision: Macedonia, Montenegro, Albania, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Iceland, Norway, and Georgia. See EU Press Release.
Moldova, Rep of Guinea & Burundi:
Last month, the EU adopted Council Decision (CFSP) 2018/1610, Council Decision (CFSP) 2018/1611, and Council Decision (CFSP) 2018/1612, which extended for 1 year (respectively) the EU’s sanctions on Moldova, the Republic of Guinea, and Burundi (see previous blog).
The following countries have aligned themselves with all 3 Decisions: Macedonia, Montenegro, Albania, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Iceland, Liechtenstein, and Norway.
Moldova and Armenia have aligned themselves with the Decisions concerning the Republic of Guinea and Burundi.
Georgia has aligned itself with the Decisions concerning Moldova and the Republic of Guinea.
Earlier this week (19 November), the UN Security Council added 1 individual, Hajji ‘Abd al-Nasir, to its ISIL (Da’esh) and Al-Qaida sanctions list (UN asset freeze, travel ban and arms embargo imposed). See UN Press Release and Narrative Summary of Reasons for Listing.
Yesterday (20 November), the US implemented this UN listing by designating al-Nasir as a Specially Designated Global Terrorist (SDGT) pursuant to Executive Order 13224. See OFAC Notice and US Department of State Press Release.
On 22 November, the EU implemented this UN listing, see Commission Implementing Regulation (EU) 2018/1809.
Last week (16 November 2018), the UN Security Council added one individual, Salah Badi, to its Libya sanctions list. As a result, he will now be subject to a UN asset freeze and travel ban. See UN Press Release and Narrative Summary of Reasons for Listing.
The Draft UK Withdrawal Agreement provides for a transition period (until 31 December 2020) during which EU law, including the Common Foreign and Security Policy (CFSP), will continue to apply to and in the UK. This means the UK will continue to implement EU sanctions during this period (see Part 4, Articles 126 and 127(1) of the Agreement, and Section IV of the EU press release).
If the EU and UK reach an agreement governing their future relationship in the area of CFSP which becomes applicable during the transition period, then the EU’s CFSP provisions and the sanctions adopted on the basis of those provisions will cease to apply to the UK from the date of that new agreement (see Part 4, Article 127(2) of the Agreement).
The EU and UK have outlined the political declaration setting out the framework for their future relationship, saying there will be a “[c]onsultation on sanctions, with intensified exchange of information where foreign policy objectives are aligned, with the possibility of adopting mutually reinforcing sanctions.” See UK Government Explanatory Slides.
Yesterday (13 November 2018), the UN Security Council removed another entity from its Iraq sanctions list: Rafidain Company For Building Dams. As a result, it will no longer be subject to UN asset freezing measures. See UN press release.
On 19 November 2018, the EU implemented this delisting, see Commission Implementing Regulation (EU) 2018/1781.