Sanctioning North Korea: The enforcement problem in Resolution 2094

Access my latest article in the Australian Journal of International Affairs here…


Habib, B. (2016) ‘The Enforcement Problem in Resolution 2094 and the UNSC Sanctions Regime: Sanctioning North Korea‘. Australian Journal of International Affairs. 70(1): 50-68.

The United Nations Security Council


This article deconstructs United Nations Security Council (UNSC) Resolution 2094 through the preambulatory statements, objectives, obligations, and implementation and enforcement provisions of UNSC Resolution 2094. The article proceeds in three parts. First, it reviews the academic literature on UNSC sanctions and their application in the North Korean case. Second, it deconstructs UNSC Resolution 2094 according to the common structural components of international legal instruments to assess the level of congruence between the objectives of UNSC Resolution 2094, its enforcement mechanisms and outcomes. Third, it explores the weaknesses of UNSC Resolution 2094, focusing on the gap between the objectives and enforcement mechanisms found in the resolution. The inability of the UNSC sanctions regime to prevent North Korea reaching the cusp of becoming a nuclear weapons power is evidence of the international community’s weak leverage over Pyongyang, a situation arising from the vulnerability of South Korea to a North Korean attack and the cross-cutting strategic priorities of China; the absence of economic linkages between the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea and the primary sanctions-sender state in the USA; and North Korea’s commitment to a nuclear weapons capability as the foundation of its medium-term economic development strategy, its institutional governance structure and associated ideological commitments.


  1. Hi Benjamin, I wanted to leave you a comment of support in regards to your confession of anxiety recently. I suffer from crippling anxiety myself and simply cannot perform in front of a group of people. I can sing, I can act, I can do stand up comedy routines in front of a camera that I’m operating myself, but as soon as there is an audience, my brain freezes like Windows 98 and I can’t think. I can’t breathe. All I can hear is my heartbeat in my ears, all I can feel is the butterflies, the dizziness, the rushing blood, the panic. I drop the ball every single time. The last time I tried to sing in front of a crowd, I lost it and it took me a full 12 months before I would sing at all again, even when I was alone. I want you to know you are not alone, you are not abnormal, and you have actually won the admiration and respect of so so many people by being so honest and raw about your anxiety. I hope you can move on from this feeling good knowing that without even meaning to, you have helped a lot of people who have been suffering in silence with their anxiety. Sometimes in life we need to fall over ourselves in order to help others up, and I hope you recognise what an amazing thing you’ve actually done. Chin up buddy, you’re an amazing man 🙂

Share your thoughts...

Please log in using one of these methods to post your comment: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.