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  • Writer's pictureInternational Lawyers Project

Equipping Civil Society To Combat Corruption using Targeted Sanctions

Updated: Nov 24, 2023

The International Lawyers Project (ILP), in partnership with the United Nations Convention Against Corruption (UNCAC) Coalition, conducted a sanctions training workshop on 22 June 2023. Led by ILP’s own Senior Director for Governance and Anti-Corruption, Oliver Windridge, the training was attended by members of the European and African Regional Networks of the UNCAC Coalition.

Centred on the Global Magnitsky Program, the training commenced with defining sanctions as a foreign policy tool aimed at encouraging behavioural change. In introducing the value of sanctions to the participants, Oliver elaborated on the sources and types of sanctions, targets of sanctions, and the required standard of proof in sanctions submissions.

Through practical examples and case studies, the relative advantages and disadvantages of various sanctions regimes were explained with the view that the choice of sanctions could be leveraged to achieve the best possible outcome and impact. By way of example, geographic sanctions could cover many different activities as they are broadly drafted to include activities occurring in a jurisdiction vis-a-vis thematic sanctions which only include a particular conduct. Conversely, thematic sanctions are not limited by jurisdiction like the geographic sanctions, and could therefore be used against individuals from many different countries.

In better understanding the role of sanctions in combating corruption, the session included a comprehensive presentation on the legal regimes and country approaches to Magnitsky-style sanctions, i.e., the United States Global Magnitsky Act, the United Kingdom Global Anti-Corruption Sanctions and Global Human Rights Sanctions Regimes, the European Union Sanctions Regime, and the Canadian Sergei Magnitsky Act.

The training workshop concluded with an interactive Q&A session, where insights were shared in making strong sanctions submissions and ensuring that they are successful by undertaking advocacy and intentional engagements with relevant authorities and stakeholders.


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