AQ / ISIL / A - EP 1

Duration: 15-Oct-1999 to 19-Dec-2000

On 15 October 1999 (UNSCR 1267), the UNSC imposed targeted sanctions (asset freeze and aviation ban) on the Taliban regime, which was in control of Afghanistan at the time, for its refusal to turn over Usama bin Laden for prosecution for the August 1998 bombing of US embassies in Kenya and Tanzania and its provision of sanctuary and training for international terrorists and their organizations.


Coerce the Taliban to turn over Usama bin Laden.


Constrain the Taliban from engaging in a variety of proscribed activities (particularly as haven for terrorism).


Signal the Taliban for its violation of a number of norms (on terrorism, the cultivation of drugs, the ongoing armed conflict, kidnapping of diplomatic personnel, and the treatment of women).


Aviation ban on aircraft owned, leased, or operated by the Taliban and asset freeze on the Taliban regime.

Maximum number of designees during the episode: 1 individual and 6 entities.

Potential scope of impact


UN sanctions are likely to have significant impacts on the general population, since they include restrictions on the import of widely used commodities (such as oil), major commodity exports, and/or the transportation or financial sectors that affect the entire economy.

Sanctions imposition was deliberately delayed by 1 month. Sanctions Committee created, no sanctions monitoring mechanism in place. Designation criteria were specified and targets designated. Enforcement authorities not specified.



Policy outcome

Taliban refused to extradite bin Laden.

Sanctions contribution

UN sanctions were not the primary tool for coercion; international diplomacy and US unilateral sanctions appeared more significant at the time (US legal proceedings were focused on bin Laden, not the Taliban).



Policy outcome

Restrictions on Ariana Airlines forced the Taliban to find new sources of supply (Viktor Bout).

Sanctions contribution

UN sanctions multi-lateralized US unilateral measures (affecting the Gulf and western China).



Policy outcome

UNSCRs 1214 and 1267 clearly articulated violation of norm against terrorism under Chapter VII, but degree of stigmatization was limited; Taliban increased their proscribed activities and became increasingly intransigent.

Sanctions contribution

The UNSCRs were the principal mechanism for communicating the international norm against terrorism, and Taliban was strongly stigmatized.



Statements of Libyan official regarding costs of sanctions and decision to offer suspects indicated a change of strategy away from previous non-response.

Increase in corruption and criminality, strengthening of authoritarian rule, rally round the flag effect, increase in human rights violations, strengthening of political factions, humanitarian consequences.



  • Imposes aviation ban on Taliban owned, leased or operated aircrafts and specifies humanitarian and religious exemptions (pending Committee approval).
  • Imposes financial asset freeze on the Taliban.
  • Urges MS to consider further measures against Usama bin Laden and his associates.


  • Delays sanctions imposition (until 14.11.1999).
  • Establishes Sanctions Committee and specifies its mandate.
  • Requests MS reporting.