The Sanctions Game
Sanctions on Iran are illegal.
by Stephen Lendman
A previous article said that Washington bears full responsibility for imposing illegitimate sanctions on Iran. Other countries are pressured to go along. Doing so harms their own interests.
Heavy-handed US bullying largely gets its way. Rule of law principles and norms are violated. At issue is advancing Washington's imperium.
America's 1977 International Emergency Economic Powers Act (IEEPA) lets presidents claim unusual and/or extraordinary foreign threats, declare a national emergency, and regulate commerce accordingly.
Presidents took full advantage deceptively, unjustifiably, and illegally. Targeting Iran began in November 1979. Iranian assets were lawlessly seized. A full trade embargo followed.
In January 1981, it was lifted under provisions of the Algiers Accords. Most Iranian assets were unblocked. Nonetheless, Iranian Assets Control Regulations remained in effect.
Sanctions harm nations. Ordinary people are hurt most. That's the whole idea. Iranians feel the full brunt of US ruthlessness. Multiple rounds of sanctions have been imposed. Doing so is lawless. The previous article explained.
The General Assembly's 1974 Charter of Economic Rights and Duties of States says no nation may use or encourage use of economic, political or other measures to coerce another country to to subordinate its sovereign rights in any way.
Under Part IV, Section 1, Chapter III, Article 54 of the Protocol 1 Additional to the Geneva Conventions (1977):
(1) Starving civilians during war is prohibited.
(2) Attacking, destroying, removing, or compromising indispensable items is prohibited. They include foodstuffs, crops, livestock, drinking water installations and supplies, irrigation works, and other essential products, services, and facilities relating to them.
UN General Assembly Resolution 44/215 (1989) prohibits political and economic coercion against developing countries.
It specifically covers trade and financial restrictions, blockades, embargoes, and other economic sanctions. It calls them incompatible with UN Charter provisions. They adversely affect the ability of nations to function politically, economically and socially. They harm civilians most.
The International Conference on Nutrition, World Declaration on Nutrition, Food and Agriculture Organization, and World Health Organization (1992) recognized the right to access nutritionally adequate and safe food as a fundamental right.