Sanction Regimes, Arms Embargoes and Restrictions on the Export of Strategic Goods

March 1, 1993

Weapon Program: 

  • Military

Related Country: 

  • Iraq




Statement 1/3/93


Arms embargo - covers all goods and technology on the Military List as well as items entered in Group O (Nuclear List) in Annex 1 of the European Council Regulation (EC) 1334/2000 on the export of dual-use items and technology. Exceptions:

(i) goods essential for the safety of civil aircraft and air traffic control systems
(ii) radioactive material in the form of sources for medical equipment and deuterium labelled compounds for medical use


In the UK, binding UN embargoes are implemented by prohibiting the export of goods and technology on the Military List which forms Part III of the Export of Goods (Control) Order 1994, as amended. In addition, the supply of such items from the UK or supply abroad by UK registered companies and nationals is prohibited by Orders in Council made under the United Nations Act (1946).

The Orders in Council implementing the binding arms embargoes in relation to Liberia, Somalia, Angola and Rwanda also prohibit the supply by persons in the UK or by UK nationals or companies overseas of goods which are or may be intended to be used in connection with the development, production, handling, operation, maintenance, storage, detection, identification or dissemination of chemical, biological or nuclear weapons or the development, production, maintenance or storage of missiles capable of delivering such weapons. Orders in Council extend such embargoes to the Crown Dependencies and the Dependent Territories. A licence is required for each export or supply from the UK or abroad by a UK registered company or national.

National embargoes and those agreed in the EU and the OSCE prohibit only the export of goods covered by the scope of the embargo, with the exception of the embargoes on China and Iran the UK interprets the scope of all such embargoes to cover goods and technology on the Military List.


Licences are not approved for any equipment where there is knowledge or reason to suspect that it would go to a military end-user or be used for military purposes. The exception is equipment which would not normally require an export licence but is deemed licenable under the WMD end-use control (Articles 4.1, 4.4 and 4.5 of the EC Dual-use items and Technology Regulation and Articles 4 (3) (b), (c) and (d) (iii) of the Dual-use items (Export Control) Regulation 2000 and Article 2 (2) of the Export of goods (Control) order 1994 as amended) and where WMD concerns are not subsequently substantiated.


The UK operates a number of destination-specific controls which prohibit, without a licence, exports of certain dual-use goods to Iran and Iraq. Details of the goods covered are listed in the Dual-Use items (Export Control) Regulations 2000, as amended. In addition to the measures listed above, please consult export control restrictions applying to all countries and measures against terrorists. Every effort has been made to make this list of UN, EU, OSCE and UK measures as complete as possible at the time of publication. However the list should not be relied upon as comprehensive especially as measures are subject to change. Persons affected should seek their own legal advice.