What are UN and Australian Autonomous Sanctions

Sanctions are punitive measures (not involving the use of armed force) that are imposed in situations of international concern, including the grave repression of human rights, the proliferation of weapons of mass destruction, or armed conflict.

Sanctions impose restrictions on activities that relate to particular countries, goods and services, or persons and entities.

Australia implements United Nations Security Council (UNSC) sanctions regimes and Australian autonomous sanctions regimes (collectively known as Sanctions). Australia is obliged to implement UNSC sanctions regimes as a matter of international law. In addition to this, the Australian Government has decided to implement Australian autonomous sanctions regimes as a matter of Australian foreign policy. Australian autonomous sanctions regimes may supplement UNSC sanctions regimes, or be separate from them.

Sanctions aim to:

  • limit the adverse consequences of the situation of international concern (for example, by denying access to military or paramilitary goods, or to goods, technologies or funding that are enabling the pursuit of programs of expansion concern);
  • seek to influence those responsible for giving rise to the situation of international concern to modify their behaviour to remove concern (by motivating them to adopt different policies); and
  • penalise those responsible (for example denying access to travel internationally).

Australia currently implements the sanctions regimes listed on the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade (DFAT) website.

Current list of regimes

Sanctions change frequently, so regularly consult the DFAT sanctions webpage for current information.  Australian sanction laws apply broadly, including to activities in Australia, and to activities by Australian citizens and Australian-registered bodies corporate overseas.

Sanctions prohibit the University from dealing with specific individuals and entities, or providing those individuals, entities and specified countries with access to specific types of training, services and resources. The training, services or resources targeted by the sanctions are those relevant to military purposes or the development of weapons of mass destruction. For a small number of sanctioned countries this also applies to specified dual use goods. Sanctions aim to ensure the University does not equip targeted individuals, entities or countries with these resources or the skills to utilise these resources. The University must take reasonable precautions and exercise due diligence to prevent its conduct breaching Sanctions. Failure to take reasonable precautions to avoid contravention is a serious criminal offence. Penalties include up to ten years in prison and substantial fines.

More about sanctions offences