The International Emergency Economic Powers Act: Origins, Evolution, and Use

The International Emergency Economic Powers July 14, 2020
Act: Origins, Evolution, and Use
Christopher A. Casey,
The International Emergency Economic Powers Act (IEEPA) provides the President broad
Coordinator
authority to regulate a variety of economic transactions following a declaration of national
Analyst in International
emergency. IEEPA, like the Trading with the Enemy Act (TWEA) from which it branched, sits at
Trade and Finance
the center of the modern U.S. sanctions regime. Changes in the use of IEEPA powers since the

act’s enactment in 1977 have caused some to question whether the statute’s oversight provisions
Ian F. Fergusson
are robust enough given the sweeping economic powers it confers upon the President during a
Specialist in International
declared emergency.
Trade and Finance

Over the course of the twentieth century, Congress delegated increasing amounts of emergency
power to the President by statute. TWEA was one such statute. Congress passed TWEA in 1917
Dianne E. Rennack
to regulate international transactions with enemy powers following the U.S. entry into the First
Specialist in Foreign Policy
Legislation
World War. Congress expanded the act during the 1930s to allow the President to declare a

national emergency in times of peace and assume sweeping powers over both domestic and
international transactions. Between 1945 and the early 1970s, TWEA became the central means
Jennifer K. Elsea
to impose sanctions as part of U.S. Cold War strategy. Presidents used TWEA to block
Legislative Attorney
international financial transactions, seize U.S.-based assets held by foreign nationals, restrict

exports, modify regulations to deter the hoarding of gold, limit foreign direct investment in U.S.
companies, and impose tariffs on all imports into the United States.

Following committee investigations that discovered that the United States had been in a state of emergency for more than 40
years, Congress passed the National Emergencies Act (NEA) in 1976 and IEEPA in 1977. The pair of statutes placed new
limits on presidential emergency powers. Both included reporting requirements to increase transparency and track costs, and
the NEA required the President to annually assess and extend, if appropriate, an emergency. However, some experts argue
that the renewal process has become pro forma. The NEA also afforded Congress the means to terminate a national
emergency by adopting a concurrent resolution in each chamber. A decision by the Supreme Court, in a landmark case,
however, found the use of concurrent resolutions to terminate an executive action unconstitutional. Congress amended the
statute to require a joint resolution, significantly increasing the difficulty of terminating an emergency.
Like TWEA, IEEPA has become an important means to impose economic-based sanctions since its enactment; like TWEA,
Presidents have frequently used IEEPA to restrict a variety of international transactions; and like TWEA, the subjects of the
restrictions, the frequency of use, and the duration of emergencies have expanded over time. Initially, Presidents targeted
foreign states or their governments. Over the years, however, presidential administrations have increasingly used IEEPA to
target non-state individuals and groups, such as terrorists, persons who engage in malicious cyber-enabled activities, and
certain persons associated with the International Criminal Court.
As of July 1, 2020, Presidents had declared 59 national emergencies invoking IEEPA, 33 of which are still ongoing.
Typically, national emergencies invoking IEEPA last nearly a decade, although some have lasted significantly longer—the
first state of emergency declared under the NEA and IEEPA, which was declared in response to the taking of U.S. embassy
staff as hostages by Iran in 1979, may soon enter its fifth decade.
IEEPA grants sweeping powers to the President to control economic transactions. Despite these broad powers, Congress has
never attempted to terminate a national emergency invoking IEEPA. Instead, Congress has directed the President on
numerous occasions to use IEEPA authorities to impose sanctions. Congress may want to consider whether IEEPA
appropriately balances the need for swift action in a time of crisis with Congress’ duty to oversee executive action. Congress
may also want to consider IEEPA’s role in implementing its influence in U.S. foreign policy and national security decision-
making.
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Contents
Introduction ..................................................................................................................................... 1
Origins ............................................................................................................................................. 2
The First World War and the Trading with the Enemy Act (TWEA) ........................................ 2
The Expansion of TWEA .......................................................................................................... 4
Pushing Back Against Executive Discretion ............................................................................. 6
Enactment of the National Emergencies Act and the International Emergency
Economic Powers Act ............................................................................................................ 8
IEEPA’s Statute, its Use, and Judicial Interpretation .................................................................... 10
IEEPA’s Statute ....................................................................................................................... 10
Amendments to IEEPA ............................................................................................................ 11
The Informational Materials Amendments to IEEPA ....................................................... 12
USA PATRIOT Act Amendments to IEEPA ..................................................................... 13
IEEPA Trends .......................................................................................................................... 17
Presidential Emergency Use ............................................................................................. 17
Congressional Nonemergency Use and Retroactive Approval ......................................... 23
Current Uses of IEEPA ........................................................................................................... 25
Use of Assets Frozen under IEEPA ......................................................................................... 28
Presidential Use of Foreign Assets Frozen under IEEPA ................................................. 28
Congressionally Mandated Use of Frozen Foreign Assets and Proceeds of
Sanctions ........................................................................................................................ 30
Judicial Interpretation of IEEPA ............................................................................................. 33
Dames & Moore v. Regan ................................................................................................. 33
Separation of Powers—Non-Delegation Doctrine ............................................................ 34
Separation of Powers—Legislative Veto .......................................................................... 35
Fifth Amendment “Takings” Clause ................................................................................. 36
Fifth Amendment “Due Process” Clause .......................................................................... 37
First Amendment Challenges ............................................................................................ 40
Use of IEEPA to Continue Enforcing the Export Administration Act (EAA)................... 41
Issues and Options for Congress ................................................................................................... 43
Delegation of Authority under IEEPA ..................................................................................... 43
Definition of “National Emergency” and “Unusual and Extraordinary Threat” ............... 44
Scope of the Authority ...................................................................................................... 44
Terminating National Emergencies or IEEPA Authorities ................................................ 46
The Status Quo .................................................................................................................. 46

The Export Control Reform Act of 2018 ................................................................................ 47

Figures
Figure 1. Timeline of NEA and IEEPA Use .................................................................................. 16
Figure 2. Declarations and Executive Orders Citing IEEPA ......................................................... 18
Figure 3. Average Length of Emergencies Citing IEEPA .............................................................. 19
Figure 4. Cumulative Number of Ongoing National Emergencies by Year .................................. 20
Figure 5. Geographically Defined Emergencies Citing IEEPA ..................................................... 21

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Tables
Table 1. Amendments to IEEPA ..................................................................................................... 11

Table A-1. National Emergencies Declared Pursuant to the NEA ................................................ 48
Table A-2. IEEPA National Emergency Use by Executive Order ................................................. 51

Appendixes
Appendix A. NEA and IEEPA Use ................................................................................................ 48

Contacts
Author Information ........................................................................................................................ 67

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The International Emergency Economic Powers Act: Origins, Evolution, and Use

Introduction
The issue of executive discretion has been at the center of constitutional debates in liberal
democracies throughout the twentieth century. Specifically, the question of how to balance a
commitment to the rule of law with the exigencies of modern political and economic crises has
been a consistent concern of legislators and scholars in the United States and around the world.1
The United States Constitution is silent on the question of emergency power. As such, over the
past two centuries, Congress and the President have answered that question in varied and often ad
hoc
ways. In the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries, the answer was often for the President to act
without congressional approval in a time of crisis, knowingly risking impeachment and personal
civil liability.2 Congress claimed primacy over emergency action and would decide subsequently
to either ratify the President’s actions through legislation or indemnify the President for any civil
liability.3
By the twentieth century, a new pattern had begun to emerge. Instead of retroactively judging an
executive’s extraordinary actions in a time of emergency, Congress enacted statutes authorizing
the President to declare a state of emergency and make use of extraordinary delegated powers.4
The expanding delegation of emergency powers to executives, and the increase in governing via
emergency power by executives, was a common trajectory among twentieth-century liberal
democracies.5 As innovation quickened the pace of social change and global crises, some
legislatures felt compelled to delegate to their executives, who traditional political theorists
assumed could operate with greater “dispatch” than the more deliberate and future-oriented

1 Clinton Rossiter, Constitutional Dictatorship: Crisis Government in the Modern Democracies (Princeton, NJ:
Princeton University Press, 1948); Edward Corwin, Total War and the Constitution (New York: Knopf, 1963). Giorgio
Agamben, State of Exception (Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 2005); Carl Schmitt, Political Theology: Four
Chapters on the Concept of Sovereignty
(Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 1985).
2 Such an answer can be traced to, among others, John Locke, whose political theory was central to the development of
American political institutions. John Locke, Two Treatises of Government, ed. Thomas Hollis (London: A. Millar et al.,
1764), pp. 340-341 (“This power to act according to discretion, for the public good, without the prescription of the law,
and sometimes even against it, is that which is called prerogative….”).
3 Jules Lobel, “Emergency Power and the Decline of Liberalism,” Yale Law Journal 98, no. 7 (May 1989), pp. 1392-
1398; John Fabian Witt, “A Lost Theory of American Emergency Constitutionalism,” Law and History Review 36, no.
3 (Aug. 2018); George M. Dennison, “Martial Law: The Development of a Theory of Emergency Powers, 1776-1861,”
The American Journal of Legal History 18, no. 1 (Jan. 1974); Saikrishna Bangalore Prakash, Imperial from the
Beginning: The Constitution of the Original Executive
(New Haven, CT: Yale University Press, 2015), pp. 208-210;
Matthew Warshauer, Andrew Jackson and the Politics of Martial Law (Knoxville: University of Tennessee Press,
2006). As Thomas Jefferson wrote, an executive officer acting illegally for what he determines to be the good of the
country “does indeed risk himself on the justice of the controlling powers of the constitution, and his station makes it
his duty to incur that risk.” Qtd. in Prakash, Imperial from the Beginning, p. 214.
4 U.S. Congress, Special Committee on National Emergencies and Delegated Emergency Powers, A Brief History of
Emergency Powers in the United States
, committee print, 93rd Cong., 2nd sess., July 1974 (Washington, DC: GPO,
1974), pp. 40-41.
5 For scholarship on this general trend, see, e.g., William E. Scheuerman, Liberal Democracy and the Social
Acceleration of Time
(Baltimore: Johns Hopkins University Press, 2004); John M. Carey and Matthew Soberg Shugart,
eds, Executive Decree Authority (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1998); Peter L. Lindseth, “The Paradox of
Parliamentary Supremacy: Delegation, Democracy, and Dictatorship in Germany and France, 1920s-1950s,” Yale Law
Journal
113, no. 7 (May 2004); Jules Lobel, “Emergency Power and the Decline of Liberalism”; Mary L. Dudziak,
War-Time: An Idea, Its History, Its Consequences (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2012); Corwin, Total War and the
Constitution
; Rossiter, Constitutional Dictatorship.
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legislatures.6 Whether such actions subvert the rule of law or are a standard feature of healthy
modern constitutional orders has been a subject of extensive debate.7
The International Emergency Economic Powers Act (IEEPA) is one such example of a twentieth-
century delegation of emergency authority.8 One of 117 emergency statutes under the umbrella of
the National Emergencies Act (NEA),9 IEEPA grants the President extensive power to regulate a
variety of economic transactions during a state of national emergency. Congress enacted IEEPA in
1977 to rein in the expansive emergency economic powers that it had delegated to the President
under the Trading with the Enemy Act (TWEA). Nevertheless, some scholars argue that judicial
and legislative actions subsequent to IEEPA’s enactment have made it, like TWEA, a source of
expansive and unchecked executive authority in the economic realm.10 Others, however, argue
that IEEPA is a useful tool for Presidents to quickly implement the will of Congress either as
directed by law or as encouraged by congressional activity.11
Until recently, there has been little congressional discussion of modifying either IEEPA or its
umbrella statute, the NEA. Recent presidential actions, however, have drawn attention to
presidential emergency powers under the NEA of which IEEPA is the most frequently used.
Should Congress consider changing IEEPA, there are two issues that Congress may wish to
address. The first pertains to how Congress has delegated its authority under IEEPA and its
umbrella statute, the NEA. The second pertains to choices made in the Export Control Reform
Act of 2018.
Origins
The First World War and the Trading with the Enemy Act (TWEA)
The First World War (1914-1919) saw an unprecedented degree of economic mobilization. The
executive departments of European governments began to regulate their economies with or

6 Scheuerman, Liberal Democracy and the Social Acceleration of Time, ch. 2; See, e.g., Carl Schmitt, “The Plight of
European Jurisprudence,” tr. G. L. Ulmen, Telos 83 (Spring 1990); John Locke, Two Treatises of Government, pp. 340-
341 (“…since in some governments the lawmaking power is not always in being, and is usually too numerous, and so
too slow, for the dispatch requisite to execution; and because also it is impossible to foresee, and so by laws to provide
for, all accidents and necessities that may concern the public, or to make such laws as will do no harm, if they are
executed with an inflexible rigour, on all occasions, and upon all persons that may come in their way; therefore there is
a latitude left to the executive power, to do many things of choice which the laws do not prescribe.”).
7 For arguments that emergency government subverts the rule of law, see, e.g., Sanford Levinson, “Constitutional
Norms in a State of Permanent Emergency,” Georgia Law Review 40, no. 3 (Spring 2006); Bruce Ackerman, The
Decline and Fall of the American Republic
(Cambridge, MA: Harvard University Press, 2010). For an argument that
states of emergency can be a standard feature of healthy modern constitutional orders or that they can reflect or
anticipate the preferences of the legislature, see, e.g., Kim Lane Scheppele, “Small Emergencies,” Georgia Law Review
40, no. 3 (Spring 2006), p. 836; Carey and Shugart, Executive Decree Authority, p. 3.
8 P.L. 95-223 (October 28, 1977), 91 Stat. 1626, codified as amended at 50 U.S.C. § 1701 et seq. (2018) (“IEEPA”).
9 P.L. 94-412 (September 14, 1976), 90 Stat. 1255, codified as amended at 50 U.S.C. § 1601 et seq. (2018) (“NEA”);
CRS Report R46379, Emergency Authorities Under the National Emergencies Act, Stafford Act, and Public Health
Service Act
, coordinated by Jennifer K. Elsea.
10 See, e.g., Patrick Thronson, “Toward Comprehensive Reform of America’s Emergency Law Regime,” Michigan
Journal of Law Reform
46, no. 2 (2013), pp. 757-759; “The International Emergency Economic Powers Act: A
Congressional Attempt to Control Presidential Emergency Power,” Harvard Law Review 96, no. 5 (Mar., 1983), p.
1120.
11 See, e.g., Scheppele, “Small Emergencies,” pp. 845-847 (Statutes like IEEPA show “that emergencies have been
brought inside the constitutional order by being normalized in the ordinary legislative process.”).
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without the support of their legislatures. The United States, in contrast, was in a privileged
position relative to its allies in Europe. Separated by an ocean from Germany and Austria-
Hungary, the United States was never under substantial threat of invasion. Rather than relying on
the inherent powers of the presidency, or acting unconstitutionally and hoping for a subsequent
congressional ratification, President Wilson sought explicit pre-authorization for expansive new
powers to meet the global crisis.12 Between 1916 and the end of 1917, Congress passed 22
statutes empowering the President to take control of private property for public use during the
war.13 These statutes gave the President broad authority to control railroads, shipyards, cars,
telegraph and telephone systems, water systems, and many other sectors of the American
economy.14
TWEA was one of those 22 statutes.15 It granted to the executive an extraordinary degree of
control over international trade, investment, migration, and communications between the United
States and its enemies.16 TWEA defined “enemy” broadly and included “any individual,
partnership, or other body of individuals [including corporations], of any nationality, resident
within the territory ... of any nation with which the United States is at war, or resident outside of
the United States and doing business within such a territory ....”17 The first four sections of the act
granted the President extensive powers to limit trading with, communicating with, or transporting
enemies (or their allies) of the United States.18 These sections also empowered the President to
censor foreign communications and place extensive restrictions on enemy insurance or
reinsurance companies.19
It was Section 5(b) of TWEA, however, that would form one of the central bases of presidential
emergency economic power in the twentieth century. Section 5(b), as originally enacted, states:
That the President may investigate, regulate, or prohibit, under such rules and regulations
as he may prescribe, by means of licenses or otherwise, any transactions in foreign
exchange, export or earmarkings of gold or silver coin or bullion or currency, transfers of
credit in any form (other than credits relating solely to transactions to be executed wholly
within the United States), and transfers of evidences of indebtedness or of the ownership
of property between the United States and any foreign country, whether enemy, ally of
enemy or otherwise, or between residents of one or more foreign countries, by any person
within the United States; and he may require any such person engaged in any such
transaction to furnish, under oath, complete information relative thereto, including the
production of any books of account, contracts, letters or other papers, in connection

12 Rossiter, Constitutional Dictatorship, pp. 241-243; U.S. Congress, A Brief History of Emergency Powers in the
United States
, pp. 40-41.
13 J. Reuben Clark, Emergency Legislation Passed Prior to December, 1917: Dealing with the Control and Taking of
Private Property for the Public Use, Benefit, or Welfare
(Washington, DC: GPO, 1918), pp. 1-125.
14 Clark, Emergency Legislation Passed Prior to December, 1917, pp. 1-125; Rossiter, Constitutional Dictatorship, p.
243; David M. Kennedy, Over Here: The First World War and American Society (Oxford: Oxford University Press,
2004), ch. 2.
15 For an overview of TWEA’s development, see Benjamin A. Coates, “The Secret Life of Statutes: A Century of the
Trading with the Enemy Act,” Modern American History 1, no. 2 (2018).
16 P.L. 65-91 (October 6, 1917) § 2, 40 Stat. 411, codified as amended at 50 U.S.C. § 4305 (2018) (“TWEA”).
17 Ibid.
18 Ibid. § 3.
19 Ibid. § 4.
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therewith in the custody or control of such person, either before or after such transaction is
completed.20
The statute gave the President expansive control over private international economic transactions
in times of war.21 While Congress terminated many of the war powers in 1921, TWEA was
specifically exempted because the U.S. Government had yet to dispose of a large amount of alien
property in its custody.22
The Expansion of TWEA
The Great Depression, a massive global economic downturn that began in 1929, presented a
challenge to liberal democracies in Europe and the Americas. To deal with the complexities
presented by the crisis, nearly all such democracies began delegating discretionary authority to
their executives to a degree that had only previously been done in times of war.23 The U.S.
Congress responded, in part, by dramatically expanding the scope of TWEA, delegating to the
President the power to declare states of emergency in peacetime and assume expansive domestic
economic powers.
Such a delegation was made politically possible by analogizing economic crises to war. In public
speeches, President Franklin D. Roosevelt asserted that the Depression was to be “attacked,”
“fought against,” “mobilized for,” and “combatted” by “great arm[ies] of people.”24 The
economic mobilization of the First World War had blurred the lines between the executive’s
military and economic powers. As the Depression was likened to “armed strife”25 and declared to
be “an emergency more serious than war”26 by a Justice of the Supreme Court, it became routine
to use emergency economic legislation enacted in wartime as the basis for extraordinary
economic authority in peacetime.27
As the Depression entered its third year, the newly-elected President Roosevelt asked Congress
for “broad Executive power to wage a war against the emergency, as great as the power that
would be given to me if we were in fact invaded by a foreign foe.”28 In his first act as President,
Roosevelt proclaimed a bank holiday, suspending all transactions at all banking institutions
located in the United States and its territories for four days.29 In his proclamation, Roosevelt
claimed to have authority to declare the holiday under Section 5(b) of TWEA.30 However,

20 Ibid. § 5b.
21 Ibid. § 2.
22 U.S. Congress, House, Trading with the Enemy Act Reform Legislation, Report of the Committee on International
Relations on H.R. 7738
, 95th Cong., 1st sess., H.Rept. 95-459 (Washington, DC: GPO, 1977), p. 4.
23 William E. Scheuerman, “The Economic State of Emergency,” Cardozo Law Review 21 (2000), p. 1872.
24 See, e.g., Franklin D. Roosevelt's Inaugural Address of 1933 (Washington, DC: National Archives and Records
Administration, 1988); Rossiter, Constitutional Dictatorship, p. 256; U.S. Congress, A Brief History of Emergency
Powers in the United States
, p. 56.
25 Franklin D. Roosevelt's Inaugural Address of 1933.
26 New State Ice Co. v. Liebmann, 285 U.S. 262, 306 (1932) (J. Brandeis, dissenting).
27 Scheuerman, “The Economic State of Emergency,” p. 1878.
28 Franklin D. Roosevelt's Inaugural Address of 1933.
29 Pres. Proc. No. 2039 (Mar. 6, 1933).
30 In his proclamation, President Roosevelt did not refer to the “Trading with the Enemy Act,” but instead chose to use
the more opaque “Act of October 6, 1917.” Pres. Proc. No. 2039 (Mar. 6, 1933).
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because the United States was not in a state of war and the suspended transactions were primarily
domestic, the President’s authority to issue such an order was dubious.31
Despite the tenuous legality, Congress ratified Roosevelt’s actions by passing the Emergency
Banking Relief Act three days after his proclamation.32 The act amended Section 5(b) of TWEA
to read:
During time of war or during any other period of national emergency declared by the
President, the President may, through any agency that he may designate, or otherwise,

investigate, regulate, or prohibit....33
This amendment gave the President the authority to declare that a national emergency existed and
assume extensive controls over the national economy previously only available in times of war.
By 1934, Roosevelt had used these extensive new powers to regulate “Every transaction in
foreign exchange, transfer of credit between any banking institution within the United States and
any banking institution outside of the United States.”34
With America’s entry into the Second World War in 1941, Congress again amended TWEA to
grant the President extensive powers over the disposition of private property, adding the so-called
“vesting” power, which authorized the permanent seizure of property. Now in its most expansive
form, TWEA authorized the President to declare a national emergency and, in so doing, to
regulate foreign exchange, domestic banking, possession of precious metals, and property in
which any foreign country or foreign national had an interest.35
The Second World War ended in 1945. Following the conflict, the allied powers constructed
institutions and signed agreements designed to keep the peace and to liberalize world trade.
However, the United States did not immediately resume a peacetime posture with respect to
emergency powers. Instead, the onset of the Cold War rationalized the continued use of TWEA
and other emergency powers outside the context of a declared war.36 Over the next several
decades, Presidents declared four national emergencies and assumed expansive authority over
economic transactions in the postwar period.37

31 President Herbert Hoover had likewise contemplated using TWEA for such a purpose. However, Hoover’s Attorney
General, William D. Mitchell, had expressed serious doubts about the legality of such an action. In the last days of
Hoover’s presidency, Mitchell said that Hoover “should not issue [such an] executive order unless it was unanimously
agreed by [the] outgoing and incoming administrations that it was necessary and assurances [were] obtained from
Congressional leaders that [such an action] would be ratified promptly and that enabling legislation would be passed”
as there was only a “shoe string” on which to base the legality of such an order. Raymond Moley, The First New Deal
(New York: Harcourt, Brace and World, 1966), pp. 146-147.
32 P.L. 73-1 (Mar. 9, 1933), 48 Stat. 1. The House, despite having no copies of the bill and relying upon a draft text read
aloud by the Speaker, passed the bill after only 38 minutes of debate. The Senate voted to pass the measure the same
evening. U.S. Congress, A Brief History of Emergency Powers in the United States, p. 57.
33 Ibid. Italics show the language added by the Emergency Banking Relief Act.
34 E.O. 6560 (Jan. 15, 1934). These actions came in the context of greater participation by the executive in international
economic transactions generally. The Reciprocal Trade Agreement Act of 1934 gave the President the authority to
negotiate bilateral trade agreements, marking the beginning of a period of increasing U.S. trade liberalization through
executive action. Douglas A. Irwin, Clashing Over Commerce (Chicago: Chicago University Press, 2017), ch. 9.
35 P.L. 77-354 (Dec. 18, 1941), 55 Stat. 838.
36 Scheuerman, “The Economic State of Emergency,” p. 1879; Robert S. Rankin and Winfried R. Dallmyr, Freedom
and Emergency Powers in the Cold War
(New York: Appleton-Century-Crofts, 1964).
37 Pres. Proc. No. 2914 (Dec. 16, 1950); Pres. Proc. 3972 (Mar. 23, 1970); Pres. Proc. 3972 (Feb. 23, 1971); Pres. Proc.
4074 (Aug. 15, 1971). See also CRS Legal Sidebar LSB10267, Definition of National Emergency under the National
Emergencies Act
, by Jennifer K. Elsea; CRS Report 98-505, National Emergency Powers, by L. Elaine Halchin.
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During the Cold War, economic sanctions became an increasingly popular foreign policy and
national security tool, and TWEA was a prominent source of presidential authority to use the tool.
In 1950, President Harry S. Truman declared a national emergency, citing TWEA, to impose
economic sanctions on North Korea and China.38 Subsequent Presidents referenced that national
emergency as authority for imposing sanctions on Vietnam, Cuba, and Cambodia.39 Truman
likewise used Section 5(b) of TWEA to maintain regulations on foreign exchange, transfers of
credit, and the export of coin and currency that had been in place since the early 1930s.40
Presidents Richard M. Nixon and Gerald R. Ford invoked TWEA to continue export controls
established under the Export Administration Act when the act expired.41
TWEA was also a prominent instrument of postwar presidential monetary policy. Presidents
Dwight D. Eisenhower and John F. Kennedy used TWEA and the national emergency declared by
President Roosevelt in 1933 to maintain and modify regulations controlling the hoarding and
export of gold.42 In 1968, President Lyndon B. Johnson explicitly used Truman’s 1950 declaration
of emergency under Section 5(b) of TWEA to limit direct foreign investment by U.S. companies
in an effort to strengthen the balance of payments position of the United States after the
devaluation of the pound sterling by the United Kingdom.43 In 1971, after President Nixon
suspended the convertibility of the U.S. dollar to gold, he made use of Section 5(b) of TWEA to
declare a state of emergency and place a 10% ad valorem supplemental duty on all dutiable goods
entering the United States.44
The reliance by the executive on the powers granted by Section 5(b) of TWEA meant that
postwar sanctions regimes and significant parts of U.S. international monetary policy relied on
continued states of emergency for their operation.
Pushing Back Against Executive Discretion
By the mid-1970s, following U.S. military involvement in Vietnam, revelations of domestic
spying, assassinations of foreign political leaders, the Watergate break-in, and other related
abuses of power, Congress increasingly focused on checking the executive branch. The Senate
formed a bipartisan special committee chaired by Senators Frank Church and Charles Mathias to

38 Pres. Proc. No. 2914 (Dec. 16, 1950). This emergency would remain in place until 1976 and would be used to justify
a host of emergency powers. See the partial list of executive orders issued pursuant to Proclamation 2914 in U.S.
Congress, Special Committee on National Emergencies and Delegated Emergency Powers, Executive Orders in Times
of War and National Emergency, Report of the Special Committee on National Emergencies and Delegated Emergency
Powers
, committee print, 93rd Cong., 2nd sess., June 1974 (Washington, DC: GPO, 1974), p. 15.
39 U.S. Congress, House Committee on International Relations, Subcommittee on Trade and Commerce, United States
Embargo on Trade with South Vietnam and Cambodia
, 94th Cong. 1st sess., June 4, 1975 (Washington, D.C., GPO,
1975), p. 2; 31 C.F.R. 500.101-500.808 (1975).
40 E.O. 10348 (Apr. 26, 1952).
41 E.O. 11677 (Aug. 1, 1972); E.O. 11683 (Aug. 29, 1972); E.O. 11796 (Jul 30, 1974); E.O. 11798 (Aug. 14, 1974);
E.O. 11810 (Sept. 30, 1974); E.O. 11818 (Nov. 5, 1974); E.O. 11940 (Sept. 30, 1976).
42 E.O. 10896 (Nov. 29, 1960); E.O. 11037 (July 20, 1962).
43 E.O. 11387 (Jan. 1, 1968).
44 Pres. Proc. No. 4074 (Jan. 21, 1971). Although the proclamation did not explicitly refer to TWEA in order to avoid
the possible embarrassment of using a statute named the “Trading with the Enemy Act” to impose a tariff principally
aimed at U.S. allies, the proclamation was carefully worded to not exclude TWEA as an authority under which the
proclamation was issued. When a legal challenge was issued, the Government argued, and the U.S. Court of Customs
and Patent Appeals agreed, that TWEA was the source of the authority for the proclamation. United States v. Yoshida
Int'l, Inc., 526 F.2d 560, 584 (C.C.P.A. 1975). See also CRS Insight IN11129, The International Emergency Economic
Powers Act (IEEPA) and Tariffs: Historical Background and Key Issues
, by Christopher A. Casey.
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reevaluate delegations of emergency authority to the President.45 The special committee issued a
report surveying the President’s emergency powers in which it asserted that the United States had
technically “been in a state of national emergency since March 9, 1933” and that there were four
distinct declarations of national emergency in effect.46 The report also noted that the United States
had “on the books at least 470 significant emergency statutes without time limitations delegating
to the Executive extensive discretionary powers, ordinarily exercised by the Legislature, which
affect the lives of American citizens in a host of all-encompassing ways.”47
In the course of the Committee’s investigations, Senator Mathias, a committee co-chair, noted, “A
majority of the people of the United States have lived all of their lives under emergency
government.” Senator Church, the other co-chair, said the central question before the committee
was “whether it [was] possible for a democratic government such as ours to exist under its present
Constitution and system of three separate branches equal in power under a continued state of
emergency.”48
Among the more controversial statutes highlighted by the committee was TWEA. In 1977, during
the House markup of a bill revising TWEA, Representative Jonathan Bingham, Chairperson of
the House International Relations Committee’s Subcommittee on Economic Policy, described
TWEA as conferring “on the President what could have been dictatorial powers that he could
have used without any restraint by Congress.”49 According to the Department of Justice, TWEA
granted the President four major groups of powers in a time of war or other national emergency:
(a) Regulatory powers with respect to foreign exchange, banking transfers, coin, bullion,
currency, and securities;
(b) Regulatory powers with respect to “any property in which any foreign country or a
national thereof has any interest”;

45 The bipartisan, special committee was called the “Senate Special Committee on the Termination of the National
Emergency,” and was charged with conducting “a study and investigation with respect to the matter of terminating the
national emergency proclaimed by the President of the United States on December 16, 1950.” U.S. Congress, Senate,
Subcommittee on International Trade and Commerce of the Committee on International Relations, Trading with the
Enemy: Legislative and Executive Documents Concerning Regulation of International Transactions in Time of
Declared National Emergency
, committee print, 94th Cong., 2nd sess., Nov. 1976 (Washington, DC: GPO, 1976), p. iii.
46 U.S. Congress, A Brief History of Emergency Powers in the United States, p. v. The four national emergencies were
those proclaimed by President Roosevelt in 1933, President Truman in 1950, and the two proclaimed by President
Nixon in 1970 and 1971.
47 U.S. Congress, A Brief History of Emergency Powers in the United States, p. v.
48 Qtd. in Trading with the Enemy: Legislative and Executive Documents, p. iii.
49 U.S. Congress, House, Committee on International Relations, Revision of the Trading with the Enemy Act: Markup
before the Committee on International Relations (“House Markup”)
, 95th Cong., 1st sess., June 1977 (Washington, DC:
GPO, 1977), p. 5. House and Senate committee reports expressed the view that past Presidents had abused the authority
to regulate economic transactions in a national emergency conferred by TWEA by using it in circumstances far
removed from those that originally gave rise to the declaration of national emergency. H. Rept. No. 95-459 (June 23,
1977); S. Rept. No. 95-466 (Oct. 3, 1977). Both reports noted that President Lyndon B. Johnson, citing President
Truman's declaration of national emergency with respect to Korea in 1950, had imposed controls on direct investment
abroad by U.S. nationals in 1968, and that President Gerald R. Ford had used President Nixon's declaration of national
emergency with respect to the balance of payments in 1971 to justify extending the controls and regulations of the
Export Administration Act when that Act lapsed temporarily in 1976. H. Rept. No. 95-459, at 5; S. Rept. No. 95-466, at
2. More generally, the House report noted that the national emergency authority of TWEA had been used by President
Franklin D. Roosevelt to regulate the banking industry in 1933 and to impose consumer credit controls in 1941 and by
President Richard M. Nixon to impose a surcharge on imports into the United States in 1971. Thus, the House report
concluded, TWEA “has become essentially an unlimited grant of authority for the President to exercise, at his
discretion, broad powers in both the domestic and international economic arena, without congressional review.” Ibid.,
p. 7.
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(c) The power to vest “any property or interest of any foreign country or national thereof”;
and
(d) The powers to hold, use, administer, liquidate, sell, or otherwise deal with “such interest
or property” in the interest of and for the benefit of the United States.50
The House report on the reform legislation called TWEA “essentially an unlimited grant of
authority for the President to exercise, at his discretion, broad powers in both the domestic and
international economic arena, without congressional review.”51 The criticisms of TWEA centered
on the following:
(a) It required no consultation or reports to Congress with regard to the use of powers or
the declaration of a national emergency.
(b) It set no time limits on a state of emergency, no mechanism for congressional review,
and no way for Congress to terminate it.
(c) It stated no limits on the scope of TWEA’s economic powers and the circumstances
under which such authority could be used.
(d) The actions taken under the authority of TWEA were rarely related to the circumstances
in which the national emergency was declared.52
In testimony before the House Committee on International Relations, Professor Harold G. Maier,
a noted legal scholar, summed up the development and the main criticisms of TWEA:
Section 5(b)’s effect is no longer confined to “emergency situations” in the sense of
existing imminent danger. The continuing retroactive approval, either explicit or implicit,
by Congress of broad executive interpretations of the scope of powers which it confers has
converted the section into a general grant of legislative authority to the President…”53
Enactment of the National Emergencies Act and the International
Emergency Economic Powers Act
Congress’s reforms to emergency powers under TWEA came in two acts. First, Congress enacted
the National Emergencies Act (NEA) in 1976.54 The NEA provided for the termination of all
existing emergencies in 1978, except those making use of Section 5(b) of TWEA, and placed new
restrictions on the manner of declaring and the duration of new states of emergency, including:
 Requiring the President to immediately transmit to Congress a notification of the
declaration of national emergency.
 Requiring a biannual review whereby “each House of Congress shall meet to
consider a vote on a concurrent [now joint, see below] resolution to determine
whether that emergency shall be terminated.”
 Authorizing Congress to terminate the national emergency through a privileged
concurrent [now joint] resolution.55

50 House, Trading with the Enemy Act Reform Legislation, p. 2.
51 Ibid.
52 Ibid., p. 9.
53 Ibid., p. 9.
54 P.L. 94-412 (Sept. 14, 1976), 90 Stat. 1255, codified as amended at 50 U.S.C. § 1601 et seq (2018).
55 Ibid. While the NEA terminated the national emergencies on September 14, 1978, it explicitly enabled the
continuation of those emergencies with respect to Section 5(b) of TWEA to give the Congress more time to consider
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Second, Congress tackled the thornier question of TWEA. Because the authorities granted by
TWEA were heavily entwined with postwar international monetary policy and the use of
sanctions in U.S. foreign policy, unwinding it was a difficult undertaking.56 The exclusion of
Section 5(b) reflected congressional interest in preserving existing regulations regarding foreign
assets, foreign funds, and exports of strategic goods.57 Similarly, establishing a means to continue
existing uses of TWEA reflected congressional interest in “improving future use rather than
remedying past abuses.”58
The subcommittee charged with reforming TWEA spent more than a year preparing reports,
including the first complete legislative history of TWEA, a tome that ran nearly 700 pages.59 In
the resulting legislation, Congress did three things. First, Congress amended TWEA so that it
was, as originally intended, only applicable “during a time of war.”60 Second, Congress expanded
the Export Administration Act to include powers that previously were authorized by reference to
Section 5(b) of TWEA.61 Finally, Congress wrote the International Emergency Economic Powers
Act (IEEPA) to confer “upon the President a new set of authorities for use in time of national
emergency which are both more limited in scope than those of section 5(b) and subject to
procedural limitations, including those of the [NEA].”62
The Report of the House Committee on International Relations summed up the nature of an
“emergency” in their “new approach” to international emergency economic powers:
[G]iven the breadth of the authorities, and their availability at the President’s discretion
upon a declaration of a national emergency, their exercise should be subject to various
substantive restrictions. The main one stems from a recognition that emergencies are by
their nature rare and brief, and are not to be equated with normal ongoing problems. A
national emergency should be declared and emergency authorities employed only with
respect to a specific set of circumstances which constitute a real emergency, and for no
other purpose. The emergency should be terminated in a timely manner when the factual

how to address the issue of sanctions and international economic regulation. The International Emergency Economic
Powers Act (IEEPA) grandfathered powers that “were being exercised [under TWEA] with respect to a country on July
1, 1977,” including those with respect to Cuba, North Korea, Vietnam, and Cambodia. P.L. 95-223 (Dec. 28, 1977) §
101(b). The grandfathered powers, however, would require a declaration or renewal. See, e.g., Memorandum of Sept. 8,
1978, 45 Fed. Reg. 40,695; Memorandum of Sept. 12, 1979; Presidential Determination of Sept. 8, 1980, 45 Fed. Reg.
59,549; Memorandum of Sept. 10, 1981, 46 Fed. Reg. 45,321; Memorandum of Sept. 8, 1982, 47 Fed. Reg. 39,797;
Memorandum of Sept. 7, 1983, 48 Fed. Reg. 40,695; Memorandum of Sept. 11, 1984, 49 Fed. Reg. 35,927.
56 House, Trading with the Enemy Act Reform Legislation, pp. 6-7.
57 U.S. Congress, Senate, International Emergency Economic Powers Legislation, Report of the Committee on Banking,
Housing, and Urban Affairs
to Accompany H.R. 7738, 95th Cong., 1st Sess., S.Rept. 95-466 (Washington, DC: GPO,
1977), p. 3.
58 House, Trading with the Enemy Act Reform Legislation, 10.
59 House Markup, p. 9; U.S. Congress, House, Subcommittee on International Trade and Commerce of the Committee
on International Relations, Trading with the Enemy: Legislative and Executive Documents Concerning Regulation of
International Transactions in a Time of Declared Emergency
, 94th Cong., 2nd sess., Nov. 1976, committee print
(Washington, DC: GPO, 1976).
60 P.L. 95-223 (Dec. 28, 1977) (Title I) (“Section 5(b)(1) of the Trading With the Enemy Act // 50 USC app. 5. // is
amended by striking out “or during any other period of national emergency declared by the President” in the text
preceding subparagraph (A).”); 91 Stat. 1625, codified as amended at 50 U.S.C. § 4305 (2018); House, Trading with
the Enemy Act Reform Legislation
, p. 2.
61 Ibid. (Title III); House, Trading with the Enemy Act Reform Legislation, p. 2 (“Title III of the bill makes a series of
conforming amendments to the Export Administration Act, which transfer to that act the authority, heretofore exercised
under section 5(b) of the Trading With the Enemy Act. to regulate exports of non-U.S.-origin goods and technology by
foreign subsidiaries of U.S. concerns.”).
62 Ibid. (Title II); House, Trading with the Enemy Act Reform Legislation, p. 2.
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state of emergency is over and not continued in effect for use in other circumstances. A
state of national emergency should not be a normal state of affairs.63
IEEPA’s Statute, its Use, and Judicial Interpretation
IEEPA’s Statute
IEEPA, as currently amended, empowers the president to:
(A) investigate, regulate, or prohibit:
(i) any transactions in foreign exchange,
(ii) transfers of credit or payments between, by, through, or to any banking institution,
to the extent that such transfers or payments involve any interest of any foreign country
or national thereof,
(iii) the importing or exporting of currencies or securities; and
(B) investigate, block during the pendency of an investigation, regulate, direct and compel,
nullify, void, prevent or prohibit, any acquisition, holding, withholding, use, transfer,
withdrawal, transportation, importation or exportation of, or dealing in, or exercising any
right, power, or privilege with respect to, or transactions involving, any property in which
any foreign country or a national thereof has any interest by any person, or with respect to
any property, subject to the jurisdiction of the United States.
(C) when the United States is engaged in armed hostilities or has been attacked by a foreign
country or foreign nationals, confiscate any property, subject to the jurisdiction of the
United States, of any foreign person, foreign organization, or foreign country that he
determines has planned, authorized, aided, or engaged in such hostilities or attacks against
the United States; and all right, title, and interest in any property so confiscated shall vest,
when, as, and upon the terms directed by the President, in such agency or person as the
President may designate from time to time, and upon such terms and conditions as the
President may prescribe, such interest or property shall be held, used, administered,
liquidated, sold, or otherwise dealt with in the interest of and for the benefit of the United
States, and such designated agency or person may perform any and all acts incident to the
accomplishment or furtherance of these purposes.64
These powers may be exercised “to deal with any unusual and extraordinary threat, which has its
source in whole or substantial part outside the United States, to the national security, foreign
policy, or economy of the United States, if the President declares a national emergency with
respect to such threat.”65 Presidents may invoke IEEPA under the procedures set forth in the
NEA. When declaring a national emergency, the NEA requires that the President “immediately”
transmit the proclamation declaring the emergency to Congress and publish it in the Federal
Register
.66 The President must also specify the provisions of law that he or she intends to use.67
In addition to the requirements of the NEA, IEEPA provides several further restrictions.
Preliminarily, IEEPA requires that the President consult with Congress “in every possible

63 House, Trading with the Enemy Act Reform Legislation, p. 11.
64 50 U.S.C. § 1702.
65 Ibid. § 1701.
66 Ibid. § 1621.
67 Ibid. § 1631.
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instance” before exercising any of the authorities granted under IEEPA.68 Once the President
declares a national emergency invoking IEEPA, he or she must immediately transmit a report to
Congress specifying:
(1) the circumstances which necessitate such exercise of authority;
(2) why the President believes those circumstances constitute an unusual and extraordinary
threat, which has its source in whole or substantial part outside the United States, to the
national security, foreign policy, or economy of the United States;
(3) the authorities to be exercised and the actions to be taken in the exercise of those
authorities to deal with those circumstances;
(4) why the President believes such actions are necessary to deal with those circumstances;
and
(5) any foreign countries with respect to which such actions are to be taken and why such
actions are to be taken with respect to those countries.69
The President subsequently is to report on the actions taken under the IEEPA at least once in
every succeeding six-month interval that the authorities are exercised.70 As per the NEA, the
emergency may be terminated by the President, by a privileged joint resolution of Congress, or
automatically if the President does not publish in the Federal Register and transmit to Congress a
notice stating that such emergency is to continue in effect after such anniversary.71
Amendments to IEEPA
Congress has amended IEEPA eight times (Table 1). Five of the eight amendments have altered
civil and criminal penalties for violations of orders issued under the statute. Other amendments
excluded certain informational materials and expanded IEEPA’s scope following the terrorist
attacks of September 11, 2001. Congress also amended the NEA in response to a ruling by the
Supreme Court to require a joint rather than a concurrent resolution to terminate a national
emergency.
Table 1. Amendments to IEEPA
Date
Action
December 28, 1977
IEEPA Enacted
(P.L. 95-223; 91 Stat. 1625)
August 16, 1985*
Fol owing the Supreme Court’s holding in INS v. Chadha, 462 U.S. 919 (1983) finding so-
called legislative vetoes unconstitutional, Congress amends the NEA to change
“concurrent” resolution to “joint” resolution. (P.L. 99-93; 99 Stat. 407, 448).
* While not technically an amendment to IEEPA, IEEPA is tied to the NEA’s provisions
relating to the declaration and termination of national emergencies.
August 23, 1988
IEEPA amended to exclude informational materials (Berman Amendment, see
elaboration below).
(Omnibus Trade and Competitiveness Act of 1988; P.L. 100-418; 102 Stat. 1107, 1371)

68 Ibid. § 1703(a).
69 Ibid. § 1703(b).
70 Ibid. § 1703(c).
71 Ibid. § 1622.
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Date
Action
October 6, 1992
Section 206 of IEEPA amended to increase civil and criminal penalties under the act.
(Treasury, Postal Service, and General Government Appropriations Act, 1993; P.L. 102-
393; 106 Stat. 1729)
October 6, 1992
Section 206 of IEEPA amended to decrease civil and criminal penalties under the act.
(Department of Defense Appropriations Act, 1993; P.L. 102-396; 106 Stat. 1876)
April 30, 1994
IEEPA amended to update the definition of informational materials.
(Foreign Relations Authorization Act for Fiscal Years 1994 and 1995; P.L. 103-236; 108
Stat. 382)
September 23, 1996
IEEPA amended to penalize attempted violations of licenses, orders, regulations or
prohibitions issued under the authority of IEEPA.
(National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 1997; P.L. 104-201; 110 Stat. 2725)
October 26, 2001
USA PATRIOT Act Amendments, see elaboration below.
(Uniting and Strengthening America by Providing Appropriate Tools Required to
Intercept and Obstruct Terrorism (USA PATRIOT) Act of 2001; P.L. 107-56; 115 Stat.
272)
March 9, 2006
Section 206 of IEEPA amended to increase civil and criminal penalties under the act.
(USA PATRIOT Improvement and Reauthorization Act of 2005; P.L. 109-177; 120 Stat.
192)
October 16, 2007
The International Emergency Economic Powers Enhancement Act amended Section 206
of IEEPA to increase civil and criminal penalties and added conspiracy to violate
licenses, orders, regulations or prohibitions issued under the authority of IEEPA. Civil
penalties are capped at $250,000 or twice the amount of the transaction found to have
violated the law. Criminal penalties now include a fine of up to $1,000,000 and
imprisonment of up to 20 years.
(International Emergency Economic Powers Enhancement Act; P.L. 110-96; 121 Stat.
1011)
Source: Congressional Research Service, based on United States Code, annotated.
The Informational Materials Amendments to IEEPA
As originally enacted, IEEPA protected the rights of U.S. persons to participate in the exchange of
“any postal, telegraphic, telephonic, or other personal communication, which does not involve a
transfer of anything of value” with a foreign person otherwise subject to sanctions. Amendments
in 1988 and 1994 updated this list of protected rights to include the exchange of published
information in a variety of formats.72 As amended, the act currently protects the exchange of
“information or informational materials, including but not limited to, publications, films, posters,
phonograph records, photographs, microfilms, microfiche, tapes, compact disks, CD ROMs,
artworks, and news wire feeds,” provided such exchange is not otherwise controlled for national
security or foreign policy reasons related to weapons proliferation or international terrorism.73

72 P.L. 100-418 (Aug. 23, 1988); P.L. 103-236 (Apr. 30, 1994). The amendments were introduced by Rep. Howard
Berman (D-CA) and are occasionally referred to as the “Berman Amendments.” For more background, see, “Sleeping
with the Enemy? OFAC Rules and First Amendment Freedoms,” Perspectives on History (May 2004).
73 Codified as amended at 50 U.S.C. § 1702(b)(3).
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USA PATRIOT Act Amendments to IEEPA74
Unlike the Trading with the Enemy Act (TWEA), IEEPA did not allow the President to vest assets
as originally enacted.75 In 2001, at the request of the George W. Bush Administration, Congress
amended IEEPA as part of the USA PATRIOT Act76 to return to the President the authority to vest
frozen assets, but only under certain circumstances:
... the President may ... when the United States is engaged in armed hostilities or has been
attacked by a foreign country or foreign nationals, confiscate any property, subject to the
jurisdiction of the United States, of any foreign person, foreign organization, or foreign
country that [the President] determines has planned, authorized, aided, or engaged in such
hostilities or attacks against the United States; and all right, title, and interest in any
property so confiscated shall vest, when, as, and upon the terms directed by the President,
in such agency or person as the President may designate from time to time, and upon such
terms and conditions as the President may prescribe, such interest or property shall be held,
used, administered, liquidated, sold, or otherwise dealt with in the interest of and for the
benefit of the United States, and such designated agency or person may perform any and
all acts incident to the accomplishment or furtherance of these purposes.77
Speaking about the efforts of intelligence and law enforcement agencies to identify and disrupt
the flow of terrorist finances, Attorney General John Ashcroft told Congress:
At present the President’s powers are limited to freezing assets and blocking transactions
with terrorist organizations. We need the capacity for more than a freeze. We must be able
to seize. Doing business with terrorist organization must be a losing proposition. Terrorist
financiers must pay a price for their support of terrorism, which kills innocent Americans.
Consistent with the President’s [issuance of E.O. 1322478] and his statements [of
September 24, 2001], our proposal gives law enforcement the ability to seize the terrorists’
assets. Further, criminal liability is imposed on those who knowingly engage in financial
transactions, money-laundering involving the proceeds of terrorist acts.79
The House Judiciary Committee report explaining the amendments described its purpose as
follows:
Section 203 of the International Emergency Economic Powers Act (50 U.S.C. § 1702)
grants to the President the power to exercise certain authorities relating to commerce with
foreign nations upon his determination that there exists an unusual and extraordinary threat
to the United States. Under this authority, the President may, among other things, freeze
certain foreign assets within the jurisdiction of the United States. A separate law, the
Trading With the Enemy Act, authorizes the President to take title to enemy assets when
Congress has declared war.

74 This section was authored by Jennifer K. Elsea, Legislative Attorney, American Law Division (ALD), CRS.
75 P.L. 95-223. House, Trading with the Enemy Act Reform Legislation, p. 15 (“This grant of authorities does not
include the following authorities … : (1) the power to vest … property.”); Senate, International Emergency Economic
Powers Legislation
, p. 5 (“Authority to vest property, seize records and regulate purely domestic economic transactions
would not be granted.”).
76 Uniting and Strengthening America by Providing Appropriate Tools Required to Intercept and Obstruct Terrorism
(USA PATRIOT) Act of 2001, P.L. 107-56, 115 Stat. 272.
77 P.L. 107-56 § 106, 115 Stat. 272, 277, codified at 50 U.S.C. § 1702(a)(1)(C) (2018).
78 E.O. 13224, 66 Fed. Reg. 49,079 (Sept. 24, 2001).
79 Administration’s Draft Anti-Terrorism Act of 2001: Hearing before the Committee on the Judiciary, 107th Cong., 1st
sess., serial no. 39 (Washington, DC: GPO, 2001), p. 7 (testimony of Attorney General Ashcroft).
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Section 159 of this bill amends section 203 of the International Emergency Economic
Powers Act to provide the President with authority similar to what he currently has under
the Trading With the Enemy Act in circumstances where there has been an armed attack
on the United States, or where Congress has enacted a law authorizing the President to use
armed force against a foreign country, foreign organization, or foreign national. The
proceeds of any foreign assets to which the President takes title under this authority must
be placed in a segregated account can only be used in accordance with a statute authorizing
the expenditure of such proceeds.
Section 159 also makes a number of clarifying and technical changes to section 203 of the
International Emergency Economic Powers Act, most of which will not change the way
that provision currently is implemented.80
The government has apparently never employed the vesting power to seize Al Qaeda assets
within the United States. Instead, the government has sought to confiscate them through forfeiture
procedures.81
The first, and to date, apparently only, use of this power under IEEPA occurred on March 20,
2003. On that date, in Executive Order 13290, President George W. Bush ordered the blocked
“property of the Government of Iraq and its agencies, instrumentalities, or controlled entities” to
be vested “in the Department of the Treasury.... [to] be used to assist the Iraqi people and to assist
in the reconstruction of Iraq.”82 However, the President’s order excluded from confiscation Iraq’s
diplomatic and consular property, as well as assets that had, prior to March 20, 2003, been
ordered attached in satisfaction of judgments against Iraq rendered pursuant to the terrorist suit
provision of the Foreign Sovereign Immunities Act and § 201 of the Terrorism Risk Insurance
Act83 (which reportedly totaled about $300 million)84.
A subsequent executive order blocked the property of former Iraqi officials and their families,
vesting title of such blocked funds in the Department of the Treasury for transfer to the
Development Fund for Iraq (DFI) to be “used to meet the humanitarian needs of the Iraqi people,
for the economic reconstruction and repair of Iraq’s infrastructure, for the continued disarmament
of Iraq, for the cost of Iraqi civilian administration, and for other purposes benefitting of the Iraqi
people.”85 The DFI was established by UN Security Council Resolution 1483, which required
member states to freeze all assets of the former Iraqi government and of Saddam Hussein, senior
officials of his regime and their family members, and transfer such assets to the DFI, which was
then administered by the United States. Most of the vested assets were used by the Coalition
Provisional Authority (CPA) for reconstruction projects and ministry operations.86

80 U.S. Congress, House, Report of the Committee on the Judiciary to Accompany H.R. 2975, 107th Cong., 1st sess.,
H.Rept. 107-236 (Washington, DC: GPO, 2001), p. 62.
81 See United States v. All Funds on Deposit with R.J. O'Brien & Assocs., 783 F.3d 607, 617 (7th Cir. 2015) (insurance
companies’ attempt to intercede in civil forfeiture action involving Al Qaeda assets).
82 E.O. 13290, 68 Fed. Reg. 14,307 (Mar. 24, 2003).
83 P.L. 107-297, 116 Stat. 2322 (2002).
84 See Tom Schoenberg, “Fights Loom for Iraqi Riches,” Legal Times (March 31, 2003). Judgment creditors were paid
about $140 million from the vested assets to cover the unsatisfied portions of judgments and interest.
85 E.O. 13315, 68 Fed. Reg. 52,315 (September 3, 2003).
86 GAO-04-579T Recovering Iraq’s Assets (March 18, 2004). As of March 2004, according to GAO, the CPA had
spent $1.67 billion of the $1.9 billion for “emergency needs, including salaries for civil servants and pensions, and for
ministry operations.” Ibid. at 7. The CPA was also authorized to use the more than $900 million in assets seized by the
U.S. military in Iraq for humanitarian and reconstruction activities. Ibid.
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The USA PATRIOT Act made three other amendments to Section 203 of IEEPA.87 After the
power to investigate, it added the power to block assets during the pendency of an investigation.88
It clarified that the type of interest in property subject to IEEPA is an “interest by any person, or
with respect to any property, subject to the jurisdiction of the United States.”89 It also added
subsection (c), which provides:
In any judicial review of a determination made under this section, if the determination was
based on classified information (as defined in section 1(a) of the Classified Information
Procedures Act) such information may be submitted to the reviewing court ex parte and in
camera. This subsection does not confer or imply any right to judicial review.90
As described in the House Judiciary Committee report, these provisions were meant to clarify and
codify existing practices.91

87 P.L. 107-56 §106, 115 Stat. 277 (2001).
88 Ibid., codified at 50 U.S.C. § 1702(a)(1)(B) (2018).
89 Ibid., codified at 50 U.S.C. § 1702(a) (2018).
90 Ibid., 115 Stat. at 278, codified at 50 U.S.C. § 1702(c) (2018).
91 House, Report of the Committee on the Judiciary to Accompany H.R. 2975, 62.
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Figure 1. Timeline of NEA and IEEPA Use

Source: CRS.
Notes: Emergencies not citing IEEPA invoke one of the other 116 emergency powers under the umbrella of the
NEA. For a list of these emergency powers, see CRS Report R46379, Emergency Authorities Under the National
Emergencies Act, Stafford Act, and Public Health Service Act
, coordinated by Jennifer K. Elsea.
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IEEPA Trends
Like TWEA prior to its amendment in 1977, the President and Congress together have often
turned to IEEPA to impose economic sanctions in furtherance of U.S. foreign policy and national
security objectives. While initially enacted to rein in presidential emergency authority,92
presidential emergency use of IEEPA has expanded in scale, scope, and frequency since the
statute’s enactment. The House report on IEEPA stated, “emergencies are by their nature rare and
brief, and are not to be equated with normal, ongoing problems.”93 National emergencies
invoking IEEPA, however, have increased in frequency and length since its enactment.
Since 1977, Presidents have invoked IEEPA in 59 declarations of national emergency. On
average, these emergencies last more than nine years. Most emergencies have been
geographically specific, targeting a specific country or government. However, since 1990,
Presidents have declared non-geographically-specific emergencies in response to issues like
weapons proliferation, global terrorism, and malicious cyber-enabled activities. The erosion of
geographic limitations has been accompanied by an expansion in the nature of the targets of
sanctions issued under IEEPA authority. Originally, IEEPA was used to target foreign
governments; however, Presidents have increasingly targeted groups and individuals.94 While
Presidents usually make use of IEEPA as an emergency power, Congress has also directed the use
of IEEPA or expressed its approval of presidential emergency use in several statutes.95
Presidential Emergency Use96
IEEPA is the most frequently cited emergency authority when the President invokes NEA
authorities to declare a national emergency. (Figure 1). Rather than referencing the same set of
emergencies, as had been the case with TWEA, IEEPA has required the President to declare a
national emergency for each independent use. As a result, the number of national emergencies
declared under the terms of the NEA has proliferated over the past four decades. Presidents
declared only four national emergencies under the auspices of TWEA in the four decades prior to
IEEPA’s enactment. In contrast, Presidents have invoked IEEPA in 59 of the 67 declarations of

92 House, Trading with the Enemy Act Reform Legislation, pp. 2-9.
93 Ibid, p. 11.
94 See “Presidential Emergency Use.”
95 See “Congressional Nonemergency Use and Retroactive Approval.”
96 The numbers here define emergencies by executive orders declaring an emergency. This choice causes some
anomalies in the data. For example, the national emergency with regard to controlling the whereabouts of highly
enriched uranium extracted from nuclear weapons in Russia lapsed when the notice extending the emergency was not
published in the Federal Register by the emergency’s anniversary date on June 21, 2012. As such, President Barack
Obama issued an executive order declaring a new national emergency to reinstate the restrictions. For consistency, such
anomalies have been treated as two distinct national emergencies. Such treatment decreases the average duration of
emergencies. See, e.g., E.O. 13159, Blocking Property of the Government of the Russian Federation Relating to the
Disposition of Highly Enriched Uranium Extracted From Nuclear Weapons (June 21, 2000); E.O. 13617, Blocking
Property of the Government of the Russian Federation Relating to the Disposition of Highly Enriched Uranium
Extracted From Nuclear Weapons (June 25, 2012).
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national emergency issued under the National Emergencies Act.97 As of July 1, 2020, there were
37 ongoing national emergencies; all but four involved IEEPA.98
Figure 2. Declarations and Executive Orders Citing IEEPA

Source: CRS, 2020s current to July 1, 2020.
Notes: Executive orders include declarations of national emergency that cite IEEPA that were made by
executive order and any subsequent modifications or amendments to an emergency or such an order.
Each year since 1990, Presidents have issued roughly 4.5 executive orders citing IEEPA and
declared 1.5 new national emergencies citing IEEPA.99 (Figure 2).
On average, emergencies invoking IEEPA last more than nine years.100 The longest emergency
was also the first. President Jimmy Carter, in response to the Iranian hostage crisis of 1979,
declared the first national emergency under the provisions of the National Emergencies Act and
invoked IEEPA.101 Six successive Presidents have renewed that emergency annually for nearly

97 The seven declarations of emergency under the NEA that did not involve IEEPA as of March 1, 2019 were all made
by presidential proclamation. See Proc. 6491, To Suspend the Davis-Bacon Act of March 3, 1931, Within a Limited
Geographic Area in Response to the National Emergency Caused by Hurricanes Andrew and Iniki (October 14, 1992);
Proc. 6867, Declaration of a National Emergency and Invocation of Emergency Authority Relating to the Regulation of
the Anchorage and Movement of Vessels around Cuba (March 1, 1996); Proc. 6907, Declaration of a State of
Emergency and Release of Feed Grain From the Disaster Reserve (July 1, 1996); Proc. 7463, Declaration of National
Emergency by Reason of Certain Terrorist Attacks (September 14, 2001); Proc. 7924, To Suspend Subchapter IV of
Chapter 31 of Title 40, United States Code, Within a Limited Geographic Area in Response to the National Emergency
Caused by Hurricane Katrina (September 8, 2005); Proc. 8443, Declaration of a National Emergency With Respect to
the 2009 H1N1 Influenza Pandemic (October 23, 2009); Proc. 9844, Declaration of a National Emergency Concerning
the Southern Border of the United States (February 15, 2019).
98 The three ongoing emergencies not involving IEEPA as of August 1, 2019 were declared in: Proc. 6867, Proc. 7463,
Proc. 9844. The first two of these national emergencies were declared in response to foreign threats. Notably, while
IEEPA was not invoked in the first declaration of national emergency following the terrorist attacks of September 11,
2001, President George W. Bush declared a second state of emergency invoking IEEPA. E.O. 13224, Blocking
Property and Prohibiting Transaction with Persons who Commit, Threaten to Commit, or Support Terrorism
(September 23, 2001).
99 The practice of issuing IEEPA-related executive orders has also changed over time. During the Iran hostage-taking in
1979, for example, President Carter issued a new and separate EO with each fine-tuning of the initial national
emergency declaration; overall from November 1979 to his last day in office in January 1981, President Carter issued
12 executive orders relating to the hostage crisis and negotiations with Iran. Later presidents have opted, instead, to
issue one executive order to declare the existence of a national emergency, and then to revisit that order to adjust or
expand its reach by amending the original language.
100 Emergencies invoking IEEPA that have been terminated lasted an average of 6.5 years. However, most emergencies
citing IEEPA have not been terminated, including the first ever declared, which has been ongoing since 1979. Since the
last time this report was updated, there have been a number of new emergencies citing IEEPA which has lowered the
mean length for all emergencies citing IEEPA from roughly a decade to 8.9 years; the median is currently 6 years.
101 E.O. 12170, Blocking Iranian Government Property (November 14, 1979).
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forty years. As of July 1, 2020, that emergency is still in effect, largely to provide a legal basis for
resolving matters of ownership of the Shah’s disputed assets.102 That initial emergency aside, the
length of emergencies invoking IEEPA has increased each decade. The average length of an
emergency invoking IEEPA declared in the 1980s was four years. That average extended to 10
years for emergencies declared in the 1990s and 12 years for emergencies declared in the 2000s
(Figure 3).103 As such, the number of ongoing national emergencies has grown nearly
continuously since the enactment of IEEPA and the NEA (Figure 4). Between January 1, 1979,
and July 1, 2020, there were on average 14 ongoing national emergencies each year, 13 of which
invoked IEEPA.
In most cases, the declared emergencies citing
IEEPA have been geographically specific
Figure 3. Average Length of Emergencies
(Figure 5). For example, in the first use of
Citing IEEPA
IEEPA, President Jimmy Carter issued an
executive order that both declared a national
emergency with respect to the “situation in
Iran” and “blocked all property and interests
in property of the Government of Iran [...].”104
Five months later, President Carter issued a
second order dramatically expanding the
scope of the first EO and effectively blocked
the transfer of all goods, money, or credit
destined for Iran by anyone subject to the
jurisdiction of the United States.105 A further
order expanded the coverage to block imports
to the United States from Iran.106 Together,

these orders touched upon virtually all
Source: CRS. Current as of July 1, 2020.
economic contacts between any place or legal
Notes: A single emergency was declared in the
person subject to the jurisdiction of the
1970s (Iran) and that has lasted 40 years. 2010s do
United States and the territory and
not have sufficient data to create an average length.
government of Iran.107
Many of the executive orders invoking IEEPA have followed this pattern of limiting the scope to
a specific territory, government, or its nationals. Executive Order 12513, for example, prohibited
“imports into the United States of goods and services of Nicaraguan origin” and “exports from
the United States of goods to or destined for Nicaragua.” The order likewise prohibited
Nicaraguan air carriers and vessels of Nicaraguan registry from entering U.S. ports.108 Executive
Order 12532 prohibited various transactions with the “Government of South Africa or to entities
owned or controlled by that Government.”109

102 Continuation of the National Emergency With Respect to Iran, 83 Fed. Reg. 56,251 (November 8, 2018).
103 Not enough time has passed to understand whether the trend will continue with those national emergencies declared
in the 2010s.
104 E.O. 12170.
105 E.O. 12205, Economic Sanctions Against Iran (Apr. 7, 1980). The order exempted “food, medicine and supplies
intended strictly for medical purposes, and donations of clothing intended to be used to relieve human suffering.”
106 E.O. 12211, Economic Sanctions Against Iran (April 17, 1980).
107 Exceptions were made for family remittances.
108 E.O. 12513, Prohibiting Trade and Certain Other Transactions Involving Nicaragua (May 1, 1985).
109 E.O. 12532, Prohibiting Trade and Certain Other Transactions Involving South Africa (September 9, 1985).
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Figure 4. Cumulative Number of Ongoing National Emergencies by Year

Source: CRS. Current as of July 1, 2020.
While the majority (40) of national emergencies invoking IEEPA have been geographically
specific, 13 have lacked explicit geographic limitations.110 President George H.W. Bush declared
the first geographically nonspecific emergency in response to the threat posed by the proliferation
of chemical and biological weapons.111 Similarly, President George W. Bush declared a national
emergency in response to the threat posed by “persons who commit, threaten to commit, or
support terrorism.”112 President Barack Obama declared emergencies to respond to the threats of
“transnational criminal organizations” and “persons engaging in malicious cyber-enabled
activities.” President Donald Trump declared an emergency to respond to “foreign adversaries”
who were “creating and exploiting vulnerabilities in information and communications
technologies and services.”113 Without explicit geographic limitations, these orders have included
provisions that are global in scope. These geographically nonspecific emergencies invoking
IEEPA have increased in frequency over the past 40 years—seven of the 13 have been declared
since 2015.114

110 This number excludes those emergencies declared to extend the Export Administration Act of 1979.
111 E.O. 12735, Chemical and Biological Weapons Proliferation (November 16, 1990).
112 E.O. 13224, Blocking Property and Prohibiting Transactions With Persons Who Commit, Threaten to Commit, or
Support Terrorism (September 23, 2001).
113 E.O. 13873, Securing the Information and Communications Technology and Services Supply Chain (May 14, 2019).
114 E.O. 13694, Blocking the Property of Certain Persons Engaging in Significant Malicious Cyber-Enabled Activities
(April 1, 2015); E.O. 13818, Blocking the Property of Persons Involved in Serious Human Rights Abuse or Corruption
(December 20, 2017); E.O. 13848, Imposing Certain Sanctions in the Event of Foreign Interference in a United States
Election (September 12, 2018); E.O. 13873, Securing the Information and Communications Technology and Services
Supply Chain (May 15, 2019); E.O. 13920, Securing the United States Bulk-Power System (May 1, 2020); E.O. 13928,
Blocking Property of Certain Persons Associated With the International Criminal Court (June 11, 2020). Some have
argued that this shift was the result of humanitarian concerns about the effects of sanctions on the populations of the
targeted states. Beginning in the 1990s, United Nations Security Council sanctions began to target the political and
economic elites of a state, rather than the whole population. Kern Alexander, Economic Sanctions: Law and Public
Policy
(London: Palgrave Macmillan, 2009), p. xi. However, use of such orders has expanded beyond political and
economic elites. See, e.g., E.O. 13928.
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Figure 5. Geographically Defined Emergencies Citing IEEPA

Source: CRS. Current as of July 1, 2020.
In addition to the erosion of geographic
Examples of Actions Taken in Non-
limitations, the stated motivations for
Geographic Emergencies Citing IEEPA
declaring national emergencies have expanded

Chemical and biological weapons proliferation
in scope as well. Initially, stated rationales for

Measures to restrict the participation by United
declarations of national emergency citing
States persons in weapons proliferation activities
IEEPA were short and often referenced either

Measures to prevent proliferation of weapons of
a specific geography or the specific actions of
mass destruction
a government. Presidents found that

Prohibiting transactions with terrorists who
circumstances like “the situation in Iran,”115 or
threaten to disrupt the Middle East peace process
the “policies and actions of the Government of

Blocking property and prohibiting transactions
Nicaragua,”116 constituted “unusual and
with persons who commit, threaten to commit, or
extraordinary threat[s] to the national security
support terrorism
and foreign policy of the United States” and

Blocking property of transnational criminal
would therefore declare a national
organizations
emergency.117

Blocking the property of certain persons engaging
in significant malicious cyber-enabled activities
The stated rationales have, however, expanded

Blocking the property of persons involved in
over time in both the length and subject
serious human rights abuse or corruption
matter. Presidents have increasingly declared

Imposing certain sanctions in the event of foreign
national emergencies, in part, to respond to
interference in a United States election

115 E.O. 12170.
116 E.O. 12513.
117 Ibid.
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human and civil rights abuses,118 slavery,119 denial of religious freedom,120 political repression,121
public corruption,122 and the undermining of democratic processes.123 While the first reference to
human rights violations as a rationale for a declaration of national emergency came in 1985,124
most of such references have come in the past twenty years. Table A-2.
Presidents have also expanded the nature of the targets of IEEPA sanctions. Originally, the targets
of sanctions issued under IEEPA were foreign governments. The first use of IEEPA targeted
“Iranian Government Property.”125 Use of IEEPA quickly expanded to target geographically
defined regions.126 Nevertheless, Presidents have also increasingly targeted groups, such as
political parties, corporations, or terrorist organizations, and individuals, such as supporters of
terrorism, suspected narcotics traffickers, or associates of the International Criminal Court.127
The first instances of orders directed at groups or persons were limited to foreign groups or
persons. For example, in Executive Order 12978, President Bill Clinton targeted specific “foreign
persons” and “persons determined [...] to be owned or controlled by, or to act for or on behalf of”
such foreign persons.128 An excerpt is included below:
Except to the extent provided in section 203(b) of IEEPA (50 U.S.C. 1702(b)) and in
regulations, orders, directives, or licenses that may be issued pursuant to this order, and
notwithstanding any contract entered into or any license or permit granted prior to the
effective date, I hereby order blocked all property and interests in property that are or
hereafter come within the United States, or that are or hereafter come within the possession
or control of United States persons, of:
(a)  
the foreign persons listed in the Annex to this order;
(b)  
foreign persons determined by the Secretary of the Treasury, in consultation
with the Attorney General and the Secretary of State:
(i)  
to play a significant role in international narcotics trafficking centered in
Colombia; or

118 E.O. 12532; E.O. 13396, Blocking Property of Certain Persons Contributing to the Conflict in Cote d'Ivoire
(February 7, 2006); E.O. 13067, Blocking Sudanese Government Property and Prohibiting Transactions With Sudan
(November 3, 1997); E.O. 13692, Blocking Property and Suspending Entry of Certain Persons Contributing to the
Situation in Venezuela (March 8, 2015).
119 E.O. 13067.
120 E.O. 13067.
121 E.O. 13405, Blocking Property of Certain Persons Undermining Democratic Processes or Institutions in Belarus
(Jun. 16, 2006).
122 Ibid.
123 Ibid.
124 E.O. 12532.
125 E.O. 12170.
126 See, e.g., E.O. 12513.
127 See, e.g., E.O. 12865 (prohibiting transactions with the National Union for the Total Independence of Angola
(UNITA), the second largest political party in Angola); E.O. 13129 (prohibiting transactions with the Taliban); E.O.
13224 (prohibiting transactions with persons who commit, threaten to commit, or support terrorism); E.O. 12978
(prohibiting transactions with certain narcotics traffickers); E.O. 13928 (blocking property of certain persons associated
with the International Criminal Court). See also CRS Insight IN11428, International Criminal Court: U.S. Sanctions in
Response to Investigation of War Crimes in Afghanistan
, by Matthew C. Weed and Dianne E. Rennack.
128 E.O. 12978, Blocking Assets and Prohibiting Transactions With Significant Narcotics Traffickers (October 21,
1995).
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(ii)  
materially to assist in, or provide financial or technological support for
or goods or services in support of, the narcotics trafficking activities of persons
designated in or pursuant to this order; and
(c)  
persons determined by the Secretary of the Treasury, in consultation with the
Attorney General and the Secretary of State, to be owned or controlled by, or to act
for or on behalf of, persons designated in or pursuant to this order.129
However, in 2001, President George W. Bush issued Executive Order 13219 to target “persons
who threaten international stabilization efforts in the Western Balkans.” While the order was
similar to that of Executive Order 12978, it removed the qualifier “foreign.” As such, persons in
the United States, including U.S. citizens, could be targets of the order.130 The following is an
excerpt of the order:
Except to the extent provided in section 203(b)(1), (3), and (4) of IEEPA (50 U.S.C.
1702(b)(1), (3), and (4)), the Trade Sanctions Reform and Export Enhancement Act of
2000 (title IX, P.L. 106-387), and in regulations, orders, directives, or licenses that may
hereafter be issued pursuant to this order, and notwithstanding any contract entered into or
any license or permit granted prior to the effective date, all property and interests in
property of:
(i)  
the persons listed in the Annex to this order; and
(ii)  
persons designated by the Secretary of the Treasury, in consultation with the
Secretary of State, because they are found:
(A)  
to have committed, or to pose a significant risk of committing, acts of
violence...131
Several subsequent invocations of IEEPA have similarly not been limited to foreign targets.132
In sum, presidential emergency use of IEEPA was directed at foreign states initially, with targets
that were delimited by geography or nationality. Since the 1990s, however, Presidents have
expanded the scope of their declarations to include groups and individual persons, regardless of
nationality or geographic location, who are engaged in specific activities.
Congressional Nonemergency Use and Retroactive Approval
While IEEPA is often categorized as an emergency statute, Congress has used IEEPA outside of
the context of national emergencies. When Congress legislates sanctions, it often authorizes or
directs the President to use IEEPA authorities to impose those sanctions.
In the Nicaragua Human Rights and Anticorruption Act of 2018, for example, Congress directed
the President to exercise “all powers granted to the President [by IEEPA] to the extent necessary

129 Ibid. Emphasis added.
130 See, e.g., the facts of Aaran Money Wire Serv., Inc. v. United States, No. 02CV789JMR/FLN, 2003 WL 22143735,
at *3 (D. Minn. Aug. 21, 2003).
131 E.O. 13219, Blocking Property of Persons Who Threaten International Stabilization Efforts in the Western Balkans
(June 26, 2001). Emphasis added.
132 See, e.g., E.O. 13224, Blocking Property and Prohibiting Transactions With Persons Who Commit, Threaten to
Commit, or Support Terrorism (September 23, 2001); E.O. 13396, Blocking Property of Certain Persons Contributing
to the Conflict in Côte d'Ivoire (February 7, 2006).
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to block and prohibit [certain transactions].”133 Penalties for violations by a person of a measure
imposed by the President under the Act would be, likewise, determined by reference to IEEPA.134
This trend has been long-term. Congress first directed the President to make use of IEEPA
authorities in 1986 as part of an effort to assist Haiti in the recovery of assets illegally diverted by
its former government. That statute provided:
The President shall exercise the authorities granted by section 203 of the International
Emergency Economic Powers Act [50 USC 1702] to assist the Government of Haiti in its
efforts to recover, through legal proceedings, assets which the Government of Haiti alleges
were stolen by former president-for-life Jean Claude Duvalier and other individuals
associated with the Duvalier regime. This subsection shall be deemed to satisfy the
requirements of section 202 of that Act. [50 USC 1701]135
In directing the President to use IEEPA, Congress waived the requirement that he declare a
national emergency (and none was declared).136
Subsequent legislation has followed this general pattern, with slight variations in language and
specificity.137 The following is an example of current legislative language that has appeared in
several recent statutes:
(a) IN GENERAL.—The President shall impose the sanctions described in subsection (b)
with respect to—
...
(b) SANCTIONS DESCRIBED.—
(1) IN GENERAL.—The sanctions described in this subsection are the following:
(A) ASSET BLOCKING.—The exercise of all powers granted to the President
by the International Emergency Economic Powers Act (50 U.S.C. 1701 et seq.)
to the extent necessary to block and prohibit all transactions in all property and
interests in property of a person determined by the President to be subject to
subsection (a) if such property and interests in property are in the United States,
come within the United States, or are or come within the possession or control of
a United States person.
...

133 P.L. 115-335 (Dec. 20, 2018), 132 Stat. 5019.
134 Ibid.
135 P.L. 99-529 (October 24, 1986), 100 Stat. 3010.
136 Ibid.
137 See, e.g., National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 1993, P.L. 102-484 (October 23, 1992), 106 Stat.
2315; Iran and Libya Sanctions Act of 1996, P.L. 104-1172 (August 5, 1996), 110 Stat. 1541; Strom Thurmond
National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 1999, P.L. 105-261 (October 17, 1998) 112 Stat. 1920; Victims of
Trafficking and Violence Protection Act of 2000, P.L. 106-386 (October 28, 2000), 114 Stat. 1464; Comprehensive
Peace in Sudan Act of 2004, P.L. 108-497 (December 23, 2004), 118 Stat. 4012; Darfur Peace and Accountability Act
of 2006, P.L. 109-344 (October 13, 2006), 120 Stat. 1869; Comprehensive Iran Sanctions, Accountability, and
Divestment Act of 2010, P.L. 111-195 (July 1, 2010) 124 Stat 1312; National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal
Year 2012, P.L. 112-81, December 31, 2011, 125 Stat 1298; Iran Threat Reduction and Syria Human Rights Act of
2012, P.L. 112-158 (August 10, 2012) 126 Stat 1214 (makes some of the most extensive use of IEEPA); Russia and
Moldova Jackson-Vanik Repeal and Sergei Magnitsky Rule of Law Accountability Act of 2012, P.L. 112-208
(December 14, 2012) 126 Stat 1496; Carl Levin and Howard P. “Buck” McKeon National Defense Authorization Act
P.L. 113-291 (December 19, 2014), 128 Stat. 3293; Hizballah International Financing Prevention Amendments Act of
2018, P.L. 115-272 (October 25, 2018) 132 Stat. 4144.
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(2) PENALTIES.—A person that violates, attempts to violate, conspires to violate, or
causes a violation of paragraph (1)(A) or any regulation, license, or order issued to
carry out paragraph (1)(A) shall be subject to the penalties set forth in subsections (b)
and (c) of section 206 of the International Emergency Economic Powers Act (50
U.S.C. 1705) to the same extent as a person that commits an unlawful act described in
subsection (a) of that section.138
Congress has also expressed, retroactively, its approval of unilateral presidential invocations of
IEEPA in the context of a national emergency. In the Countering Iran’s Destabilizing Activities
Act of 2017, for example, Congress declared, “It is the sense of Congress that the Secretary of the
Treasury and the Secretary of State should continue to implement Executive Order No. 13382.”139
Presidents, however, have also used IEEPA to preempt or modify parallel congressional activity.
On September 9, 1985, President Reagan, finding “that the policies and actions of the
Government of South Africa constitute an unusual and extraordinary threat to the foreign policy
and economy of the United States,” declared a national emergency and limited transactions with
South Africa.140 The President declared the emergency despite the fact that legislation limiting
transactions with South Africa was quickly making its way through Congress.141 In remarks about
the declaration, President Reagan stated that he had been opposed to the bill contemplated by
Congress because unspecified provisions “would have harmed the very people [the U.S. was]
trying to help.”142 Nevertheless, members of the press at the time143 (and at least one scholar
since)144 noted that the limitations imposed by the executive order and the provisions in
legislation then winding its way through Congress were “substantially similar.”145
Current Uses of IEEPA
In general, IEEPA has served as an integral part of the postwar international sanctions regime.146
The President, either through a declaration of emergency or via statutory direction, has used
IEEPA to limit economic transactions in support of administrative and congressional national

138 Support for the Sovereignty, Integrity, Democracy, and Economic Stability of Ukraine Act of 2014, P.L. 113-95
(April 3, 2014) 128 Stat. 1088. Identical language can be found, for example, in: The Venezuela Defense of Human
Rights and Civil Society Act of 2014, P.L. 113-278 (December 18, 2014) 128 Stat. 3011; National Defense
Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2017, P.L. 114-328 (December 23, 2016) 130 Stat. 2000. Similar language can be
found, for example, in: the North Korea Sanctions and Policy Enhancement Act of 2016, P.L. 114-122 (February 18,
2016) 130 Stat. 93; the Countering America’s Adversaries through Sanctions Act, P.L. 115-44 (August 2, 2017) 130
Stat 886. Depending on the circumstance, Congress also includes a clause waiving the requirement to declare a national
emergency. See, e.g., P.L. 115-44; P.L. 115-272 (“(1) ASSET BLOCKING.—The exercise of all powers granted to the
President by the International Emergency Economic Powers Act (50 U.S.C. 1701 et seq.) (except that the requirements
of section 202 of such Act (50 U.S.C. 1701) shall not apply) to the extent necessary to block and prohibit all
transactions [...].”).
139 Countering Iran’s Destabilizing Activities Act of 2017, title I of the Countering America’s Adversaries through
Sanctions Act, P.L. 115-44 (August 2, 2017) § 104 (22 U.S.C. 9403); E.O. 13382 of June 28, 2005, “Blocking Property
of Weapons of Mass Destruction Proliferators and Their Supporters,” 70 Fed. Reg. 38,567 (July 1, 2005).
140 E.O. 12532.
141 99 H.R. 1460; See also P.L. 99-440 (October 2, 1986).
142 Economic Sanctions Against South Africa, Remarks and a Question-and-Answer-Session with Reporters on Signing
E.O. 12532, September 9, 1985, 21 Weekly Comp. Pres. Doc. 1048, 1050.
143 See, e.g., questions by Helen Thomas, United Press International, Ibid, 1050.
144 Carter, International Economic Sanctions, p. 201.
145 Ibid.
146 Ibid., ch. 9.
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security and foreign policy goals. Much of the action taken pursuant to IEEPA has involved
blocking transactions and freezing assets.
Once the President declares that a national emergency exists, he may use the authority in Section
203 of IEEPA (Grants of Authorities; 50 U.S.C. § 1702) to investigate, regulate, or prohibit
foreign exchange transactions, transfers of credit, transfers of securities, payments, and may take
specified actions relating to property in which a foreign country or person has interest—freezing
assets, blocking property and interests in property, prohibiting U.S. persons from entering into
transactions related to frozen assets and blocked property, and in some instances denying entry
into the United States.
Pursuant to Section 203, Presidents have
 prohibited transactions with and blocked property of those designated as
engaging in malicious cyber-enabled activities, including “interfering with or
undermining election processes or institutions” [Executive Order 13694 of April
1, 2015, as amended; 50 U.S.C. § 1701 note. See also Executive Order 13848 of
September 12, 2018; 83 F.R. 46843.];
 prohibited transactions with and blocked property of those designated as illicit
narcotics traffickers including foreign drug kingpins;
 prohibited transactions with and blocked property of those designated as
engaging in human rights abuses or significant corruption;
 prohibited transactions related to illicit trade in rough diamonds;
 prohibited transactions with and blocked property of those designated as
Transnational Criminal Organizations;
 prohibited transactions with “those who disrupt the Middle East peace process;”
 prohibited transactions related to overflights with certain nations;
 instituted and maintained maritime restrictions;
 prohibited transactions related to weapons of mass destruction, in coordination
with export controls authorized by the Arms Export Control Act and the Export
Administration Act of 1979,147 and in furtherance of efforts to deter the weapons
programs of specific countries (i.e., Iran, North Korea);
 prohibited transactions with those designated as “persons who commit, threaten
to commit, or support terrorism;”
 maintained the dual-use export control system at times when its then-underlying
authority, the Export Administration Act authority had lapsed;
 blocked property of, and prohibited transactions with, those designated as
engaged in cyber activities that compromise critical infrastructures including
election processes or the private sector’s trade secrets;
 blocked property of, and prohibited transactions with, those designated as
responsible for serious human rights abuse or engaged in corruption;
 blocked certain property of, and prohibited transactions with, foreign nationals of
specific countries and those designated as engaged in activities that constitute an
extraordinary threat;

147 Legislation to replace the Export Administration Act was passed as part of the John S. McCain National Defense
Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2019, P.L. 115-232 (Aug. 13, 2018), as the Export Control Reform Act of 2018, Title
XVII(B).
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 prohibited transactions with those who pose “an undue risk of sabotage to or
subversion of the design, integrity, manufacturing, production, distribution,
installation, operation, or maintenance of information and communications
technology or services in the United States.”
No President has used IEEPA to place tariffs on imported products from a specific country or on
products imported to the United States in general. However, IEEPA’s similarity to TWEA,
coupled with its relatively frequent use to ban imports and exports, suggests that such an action
could happen.148 In addition, no President has used IEEPA to enact a policy that was primarily
domestic in effect. Some scholars argue, however, that the interconnectedness of the global
economy means it would probably be permissible to use IEEPA to take an action that was
primarily domestic in effect.149
IEEPA vs Section 232 for Imposing Tariffs in Response to a
National Security Threat
While a President could likely use IEEPA to impose additional tariffs on imported goods as President Nixon did
under TWEA, no President has done so. Instead, Presidents have turned to Section 232 of the Trade Expansion
Act of 1962 in cases of purported emergency.150 Section 232 provides that if the Secretary of Commerce “finds
that an article is being imported into the United States in such quantities or under such circumstances as to
threaten to impair the national security,” then the President may take action to adjust the imports such that they
wil no longer impair national security.151 While the use of Section 232 requires findings by the Secretary of
Commerce, the restrictions and reporting requirements of the NEA do not apply. For that reason, Section 232
may be an attractive source of presidential authority for imposing additional tariffs for national security purposes.
Using this authority, President Donald J. Trump applied additional duties on steel and aluminum in March 2018.152
However, IEEPA is not subject to the same procedural restraints as Section 232. As no investigation is required,
IEEPA authorities can be invoked at any time in response to a national emergency based on an “unusual and
extraordinary threat, which has its source in whole or substantial part outside the United States.” As such, IEEPA
may be a source of authority for the President to quickly impose a tariff. On May 30, 2019, President Trump
announced his intention to use IEEPA to impose on and gradually increase a five percent tariff on all goods
imported from Mexico until “the il egal migration crisis is alleviated through effective actions taken by Mexico.”153
The tariffs were scheduled to be implemented on June 10, 2019, with five percent increases to take effect at the
beginning of each subsequent month. On June 7, 2019, President Trump announced that that “The Tariffs
scheduled to be implemented by the U.S. [on June 10], against Mexico, are hereby indefinitely suspended.”154

148 President Nixon, in effect, used TWEA to place a 10% ad valorem tariff on all imports to the U.S. Pres. Proc. No.
4074 (Jan. 21, 1971; United States v. Yoshida Int'l, Inc., 526 F.2d 560, 584 (C.C.P.A. 1975); See also Jason Luong,
“Forcing Constraint: The Case for Amending the International Emergency Economic Powers Act,” Texas Law Review
78 (2000), p. 1190.
149 “The International Emergency Economic Powers Act,” p. 1111; Patrick A. Thronson, “Toward Comprehensive
Reform of America's Emergency Law Regime,” University of Michigan Journal of Law Reform 46, no. 2 (2013), pp.
757-758.
150 Trade Expansion Act of 1962, P.L. 87-794, § 232(b)–(c), 76 Stat. 877 (codified as amended at 19 U.S.C. § 1862(b)–
(c)).
151 Ibid.; CRS In Focus IF10667, Section 232 of the Trade Expansion Act of 1962, by Rachel F. Fefer and Vivian C.
Jones; CRS Report R44707, Presidential Authority over Trade: Imposing Tariffs and Duties, by Caitlain Devereaux
Lewis.
152 Procl. 9704, 83 Fed. Reg. 11,619 (March 15, 2019); Procl. 9705, 83 Fed. Reg. 13,361 (March 15, 2019). CRS
Report R45249, Section 232 Investigations: Overview and Issues for Congress, coordinated by Rachel F. Fefer and
Vivian C. Jones.
153 Statement from the President Regarding Emergency Measures to Address the Border Crisis, May 30, 2019,
available at: https://www.whitehouse.gov/briefings-statements/statement-president-regarding-emergency-measures-
address-border-crisis/.
154 President Donald J. Trump, Twitter Post, June 7, 2018, 5:31 p.m., https://twitter.com/realdonaldtrump/status/
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Use of Assets Frozen under IEEPA155
The ultimate disposition of assets frozen under IEEPA may serve as an important part of the
leverage economic sanctions provide to influence the behavior of foreign actors. The President
and Congress have each at times determined the fate of blocked assets to further foreign policy
goals.
Presidential Use of Foreign Assets Frozen under IEEPA
Presidents have used frozen assets as a bargaining tool during foreign policy crises and to bring a
resolution to such crises, at times by unfreezing the assets, returning them to the sanctioned entity,
or channeling them to a follow-on government. The following are some examples of how
Presidents have used blocked assets to resolve foreign policy issues.
President Carter invoked authority under IEEPA to impose trade sanctions against Iran, freezing
Iranian assets in the United States, in response to the hostage crisis in 1979.156 On January 19,
1981, the United States and Iran entered into a series of executive agreements brokered by
Algeria under which the hostages were freed and the frozen assets were distributed to various
entities.157 Of the blocked assets, the agreements directed $5.1 billion to repay outstanding U.S.
bank loans to Iran, $2.8 billion returned to Iran, $1 billion transferred into a security account in
the Hague to pay other U.S. claims against Iran as arbitrated by the Iran-U.S. Claims Tribunal
(IUSCT), and $2 billion remained blocked pending further agreement with Iran or decision of the
Tribunal. The United States also froze the assets of the former Shah’s estate along with those of
the Shah’s close relatives pending litigation in U.S. courts to ascertain Iran’s right to their return.
Iran’s litigation was unsuccessful, and none of the contested assets were returned to Iran.158
Presidents have also channeled frozen assets to opposition governments in cases where the United
States continued to recognize a previous government that had been removed by coup d’état or
otherwise replaced as the legitimate government of a country. For example, after Panamanian
President Eric Arturo Delvalle tried to dismiss de facto military ruler General Manuel Noriega
from his post as head of the Panamanian Defense Forces, which resulted in Delvalle’s own

1137155056044826626. The suspension preceded the release of a U.S. Mexico Joint Declaration on migration.
Department of State, Office of the Spokesperson, U.S.-Mexico Joint Declaration, June 7, 2019, available at
https://www.state.gov/u-s-mexico-joint-declaration/.
155 This section was authored by Jennifer K. Elsea, Legislative Attorney, American Law Division (ALD), CRS.
156 E.O. 12170, 44 Fed. Reg. 65729 (Nov. 14, 1979).
157 The Algiers Accords comprise the following five documents: THE DECLARATION OF THE GOVERNMENT OF THE
DEMOCRATIC AND POPULAR REPUBLIC OF ALGERIA, Jan. 19, 1981, 81 Dep’t St. Bull., No. 2047 1, 1 (1981) [hereinafter
“General Declaration”], reprinted in 1 Iran-U.S. Cl. Trib. Rep. 3; THE DECLARATION OF THE GOVERNMENT OF THE
DEMOCRATIC AND POPULAR REPUBLIC OF ALGERIA CONCERNING THE SETTLEMENT OF CLAIMS BY THE GOVERNMENT OF
THE UNITED STATES OF AMERICA AND THE GOVERNMENT OF THE ISLAMIC REPUBLIC OF IRAN, Jan. 19, 1981, 81 Dep't St.
Bull., No. 2047, at 3, reprinted in 1 Iran-U.S. Cl. Trib. Rep. 9; UNDERTAKINGS OF THE GOVERNMENT OF THE UNITED
STATES OF AMERICA AND THE GOVERNMENT OF THE ISLAMIC REPUBLIC OF IRAN WITH RESPECT TO THE DECLARATION OF
THE GOVERNMENT OF THE DEMOCRATIC AND POPULAR REPUBLIC OF ALGERIA, 19 Jan. 1981, 81 Dep't St. Bull., No. 2047,
at 4, reprinted in 1 Iran-U.S. Cl. Trib. Rep. 13; ESCROW AGREEMENT AMONG THE UNITED STATES, Federal Reserve
Bank of New York, Bank Markazi Iran, and the Banque Centrale d'Algerie, Jan. 20, 1981, 81 Dep't St. Bull., No. 2047,
at 6, reprinted in 1 Iran-U.S. Cl. Trib. Rep. 16; and TECHNICAL ARRANGEMENT BETWEEN BANQUE CENTRALE D'ALGERIE
AND THE GOVERNOR AND COMPANY OF THE BANK OF ENGLAND AND THE FEDERAL RESERVE BANK OF NEW YORK, Jan.
20, 1981, 81 Dep't St. Bull., No. 2047, at 14, reprinted in 1 Iran-U.S. Cl. Trib. Rep. 20 (hereinafter “Algiers Accords”).
158 Sean D. Murphy, Contemporary Practice of the United States Relating to International Law, 94 Am. J. Int'l L. 677,
704 (Oct. 2000) (explaining that “[a]ll of Iran's lawsuits in U.S. courts [to recover the Shah’s assets] were eventually
dismissed, principally on grounds of forum non conveniens”).
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dismissal by the Panamanian Legislative Assembly, President Reagan recognized Delvalle as the
legitimate head of government and instituted economic sanctions against the Noriega regime.159
As part of these sanctions, the Department of State, in February 1988, advised U.S. banks not to
disburse funds to the Noriega regime, and Delvalle obtained court orders permitting him access to
those funds.160 In April 1988, President Reagan issued Executive Order 12635, which “blocked
all property and interests in property of the Government of Panama that are in the United States
. . . or that come within the possession or control of persons located within the United States.”161
In June 1988, the Department of the Treasury issued regulations directing most payments from
the U.S. government owed to Panama and all payments owed “to Panama from the operation of
the Panama Canal Commission” to an escrow account established at the Federal Reserve Bank of
New York.162 One escrow account contained funds for the payment of operating expenses of the
Delvalle government.163 After the U.S. invasion of Panama ended in early 1990, President George
H.W. Bush lifted economic sanctions against the country164 and used some of the frozen funds to
repay debts owed by Panama to foreign creditors, with remaining funds turned over to the
successor government.165
The Obama and Trump Administrations took similar actions in response to the political situation
in Venezuela. President Barack Obama initially froze Venezuelan government assets in 2015
under IEEPA and the Venezuela Defense of Human Rights and Civil Society Act of 2014.166 In
January 2019, the Trump Administration officially recognized Venezuelan opposition leader Juan
Guaidó as Venezuela’s interim president167 and permitted Guaidó access to the frozen Venezuelan
government assets that were “held at the United States Federal Reserve and other insured United
States financial institutions.”168 The Trump Administration also imposed additional sanctions
under IEEPA to freeze the assets of the main Venezuelan state-owned oil company, Petróleos de
Venezuela (Pdvsa),169 which significantly reduced funds available to the regime of Nicolas
Maduro.170 The U.S. recognition may allow the interim government to apply for a license from
OFAC to access some of Venezuela’s frozen funds.
There is also precedent for using frozen foreign assets for purposes authorized by the U.N.
Security Council. After the first war with Iraq, President George H.W. Bush ordered the transfer

159 GAO REVIEW OF ECONOMIC SANCTIONS IMPOSED AGAINST PANAMA, GAO/T-NSIAD-89-44, 4-5 (July 26, 1989).
160 Ibid. at 5.
161 E.O. 12635, 53 Fed. Reg. 12,134 (Apr. 8, 1988).
162 GAO Report, supra note 159, at 5.
163 Ibid. at 7.
164 E.O. 12,710, 55 Fed. Reg. 13,099 (Apr. 5, 1990).
165 See 1989 Cong. Q. Almanac 607 (reporting that the Department of the Treasury had concluded “that the net amount
still due Panama, after ‘offsets, was about $200 million”).
166 E.O. 13692, 80 Fed. Reg. 12,747 (Mar. 8, 2015). For information about current sanctions against Venezuela, see
CRS In Focus IF10715, Venezuela: Overview of U.S. Sanctions, by Clare Ribando Seelke.
167 President Donald J. Trump Supports the Venezuelan People’s Efforts to Restore Democracy in Their Country,
White House Fact Sheet Jan. 29, 2019, https://www.whitehouse.gov/briefings-statements/president-donald-j-trump-
supports-venezuelan-peoples-efforts-restore-democracy-country/. For background of the situation in Venezuela, see
CRS Report R44841, Venezuela: Background and U.S. Relations, coordinated by Clare Ribando Seelke.
168 Trump Supports the Venezuelan People’s Efforts.
169 E.O. 13857, 84 Fed. Reg. 509 (Jan. 25, 2019); Treasury Sanctions Venezuela’s State-Owned Oil Company Petroleos
de Venezuela, S.A.
, U.S. Dep’t of the Treasury (Jan. 28, 2019), https://home.treasury.gov/news/press-releases/sm594.
170 Marianna Parraga, “Venezuela's oil exports sink to 17-year low, choked by U.S. sanctions,” Reuters, Jun. 2, 2020,
https://www.reuters.com/article/us-venezuela-oil-exports/venezuelas-oil-exports-sink-to-17-year-low-choked-by-us-
sanctions-idUSKBN2392SG.
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of frozen Iraqi assets derived from the sale of Iraqi petroleum held by U.S. banks to a holding
account in the Federal Reserve Bank of New York to fulfill “the rights and obligations of the
United States under U.N. Security Council Resolution No. 778.”171 The President cited a section
of the United Nations Participation Act (UNPA),172 as well as IEEPA, as authority to take the
action.173 The President ordered the transferred funds to be used to provide humanitarian relief
and to finance the United Nations Compensation Commission,174 which was established to
adjudicate claims against Iraq arising from the invasion.175 Other Iraqi assets remained frozen and
accumulated interest until the United States vested them in 2003 pursuant to IEEPA.
In some cases, the United States has ended sanctions and returned frozen assets to successor
governments. For example, as a condition of releasing sanctions, the United States released
$237.6 million in frozen funds that had belonged to the Central Bank of the Socialist Federal
Republic of Yugoslavia to the central banks of the successor states in 2003.176 In 2002, the United
States released $217 million in frozen funds that had belonged to the Taliban to the Afghan
Interim Authority.177
Congressionally Mandated Use of Frozen Foreign Assets and Proceeds of
Sanctions

The executive branch has traditionally resisted congressional efforts to vest foreign assets to pay
U.S. claimants without first obtaining a settlement agreement with the country in question.178
Congress has overcome such resistance in the case of foreign governments that have been
designated as “State Supporters of Terrorism.”179 U.S. nationals who are victims of state-
supported terrorism involving designated states have been able to sue those countries for damages
under an exception to the Foreign Sovereign Immunities Act (FSIA) since 1996.180

171 E.O. 12817, 3 C.F.R. § 317 (1992). President George H.W. Bush froze Iraqi assets under U.S. jurisdiction pursuant
to IEEPA in response to Iraq’s invasion and occupation of Kuwait. E.O. 12,722, 55 Fed. Reg. 31,803 (Aug. 2, 1990).
172 22 U.S.C. § 287c (2018). The provision authorizes the President to give effect to U.N. Security Council resolutions
by “investigat[ing], regulat[ing], or prohibit[ing], in whole or in part, economic relations or rail, sea, air, postal,
telegraphic, radio, and other means of communication between any foreign country or any national thereof or any
person therein and the United States or any person subject to the jurisdiction thereof, or involving any property subject
to the jurisdiction of the United States.” The provision does not explicitly mention asset confiscation.
173 E.O. 12817, 57 Fed. Reg. 48,433 (Oct. 23, 1992).
174 See Ronald J. Bettauer, “Establishment of the United Nations Compensation Commission: The U.S. Government
Perspective,” The United Nations Compensation Commission (Leiden: Brill, 1994), p. 35.
175 S.C. Res. 687, para. 16 (April 8, 1991) (reaffirming that “Iraq ... is liable under international law for any direct loss,
damage, ... or injury to foreign Governments, nationals and corporations, as a result of Iraq's unlawful invasion and
occupation of Kuwait”; S.C. Res. 692 (May 20, 1991) (establishing the United Nations Compensation Commission
(UNCC) to administer a system to provide compensation for claims for which Iraq is liable under paragraph 16 of S.C.
Res. 687); S.C. Res. 706 and 712 (1991) (establishing an escrow account administered by the U.N. Secretary General to
fund the costs of the UNCC and other activities); S.C. Res. 778 (1992) (directing all States in possession of funds due
to Iraq for the sale of petroleum and petroleum products to transfer those funds to the U.N. escrow account).
176 FOREIGN REGIMES’ ASSETS, GAO-04-1006, 11 (Sept. 2004).
177 Ibid. at 12.
178 See, generally, 22 U.S.C. §§ 1621-1645o (Settlement of International Claims).
179 Current states designated as sponsors of terrorism are Iran, Sudan, North Korea and Syria. See U.S. Department of
State, State Sponsors of Terrorism, https://www.state.gov/j/ct/list/c14151.htm.
180 The so-called terrorism exception to the Foreign Sovereign Immunities Act (FSIA) was originally codified at 28
U.S.C. § 1605(a)(7), but an amended version is now codified at 28 U.S.C. § 1605A (2018). See CRS Report RL31258,
Suits Against Terrorist States by Victims of Terrorism, by Jennifer K. Elsea.
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To facilitate the payment of judgments under the exception, Congress passed Section 117 of the
Treasury and General Government Appropriations Act, 1999,181 which further amended the FSIA
by allowing attachment and execution against state property with respect to which financial
transactions are prohibited or regulated under Section 5(b) TWEA, Section 620(a) of the Foreign
Assistance Act (authorizing the trade embargo against Cuba), or Sections 202 and 203 of IEEPA,
or any orders, licenses or other authority issued under these statutes. Because of the Clinton
Administration’s continuing objections, however, Section 117 also gave the President authority to
“waive the requirements of this section in the interest of national security,” an authority President
Clinton promptly exercised in signing the statute into law.182
The Section 117 waiver authority protecting blocked foreign government assets from attachment
to satisfy terrorism judgments has continued in effect ever since, prompting Congress to take
other actions to make frozen assets available to judgment holders. Congress enacted § 2002 of the
Victims of Trafficking and Violence Protection Act of 2000 (VTVPA)183 to mandate the payment
from frozen Cuban assets of compensatory damages awarded against Cuba under the FSIA
terrorism exception on or prior to July 20, 2000.
The Department of the Treasury subsequently vested $96.7 million in funds generated from long-
distance telephone services between the United States and Cuba in order to compensate claimants
in Alejandre v. Republic of Cuba, the lawsuit based on the 1996 downing of two unarmed U.S.
civilian airplanes by the Cuban air force.184 Another payment of more than $7 million was made
using vested Cuban assets to a Florida woman who had won a lawsuit against Cuba based on her
marriage to a Cuban spy.185
As unpaid judgments against designated state sponsors of terrorism continued to mount, Congress
enacted the Terrorism Risk Insurance Act (TRIA).186 Section 201 of TRIA overrode long-standing
objections by the executive branch to make the frozen assets of terrorist states available to satisfy
judgments for compensatory damages against such states (and organizations and persons) as
follows:
Notwithstanding any other provision of law, and except as provided in subsection (b), in
every case in which a person has obtained a judgment against a terrorist party on a claim
based upon an act of terrorism, or for which a terrorist party is not immune under section
1605(a)(7) of title 28, United States Code, the blocked assets of that terrorist party
(including the blocked assets of any agency or instrumentality of that terrorist party) shall
be subject to execution or attachment in aid of execution in order to satisfy such judgment

181 P.L. 105-277, Div. A, Title I, § 117, 112 Stat. 2681-491 (1998), codified at 28 U.S.C. § 1610(f)(1)(A) (2018).
182 Presidential Determination 99-1 (October 21, 1998), reprinted in 34 WEEKLY COMP. PRES. DOC. 2088 (October
26, 1998).
183 P.L. 106-386, § 2002, 114 Stat. 1541 (2000). Section 2002(b)(1) required the President to “vest and liquidate up to
and not exceeding the amount of property of the Government of Cuba and sanctioned entities in the United States or
any commonwealth, territory, or possession thereof that has been blocked pursuant to [TWEA or IEEPA]” to pay the
compensatory damages portion of such judgments. Judgments against Iran were paid from appropriated funds.
184 Alejandre v. Republic of Cuba, 996 F. Supp. 1239 (S.D. Fla. 1997) ($50 million in compensatory damages and
$137.7 million in punitive damages awarded to the families of three of the four persons who were killed when Cuban
aircraft shot down two Brothers to the Rescue planes in 1996). The payment represented compensatory damages,
judicially imposed sanctions, and interest.
185 Martinez v. Republic of Cuba, No. 13-1999-CA 018208 (Miami-Dade Co., Fla., Cir. Ct. 2001) (awarding $7.1
million in compensatory damages and $20 million in punitive damages).
186 P.L. 107-297, 116 Stat. 2322 (2002).
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to the extent of any compensatory damages for which such terrorist party has been
adjudged liable.187
Subsection (b) of Section 201 provided waiver authority “in the national security interest,” but
only with respect to frozen foreign government “property subject to the Vienna Convention on
Diplomatic Relations or the Vienna Convention on Consular Relations.” When Congress
amended the FSIA in 2008188 to revamp the terrorism exception, it provided that judgments
entered under the new exception could be satisfied out of the property of a foreign state
notwithstanding the fact that the property in question is regulated by the United States
government pursuant to TWEA or IEEPA.189 Congress has also crafted legislation on occasion
that makes specific assets available to satisfy specific judgments.190
Congress has also directed that the proceeds from certain sanctions violations be paid into a fund
for providing compensation to the former hostages of Iran and terrorist state judgment
creditors.191 To fund the program, Congress designated that certain real property and bank
accounts owned by Iran and forfeited to the United States could go into the United States Victims
of State Sponsored Terrorism Fund, along with the sum of $1,025,000,000, representing the
amount paid to the United States pursuant to the June 27, 2014, plea agreement and settlement
between the United States and BNP Paribas for sanctions violations.192 The fund is replenished
through criminal penalties and forfeitures for violations of IEEPA or TWEA-based regulations, or
any related civil or criminal conspiracy, scheme, or other federal offense related to doing business
or acting on behalf of a state sponsor of terrorism.193 Half of all civil penalties and forfeitures
relating to the same offenses are also deposited into the fund.194

187 The term “blocked asset” is defined in § 201(d) of TRIA to mean
(A) any asset seized or frozen by the United States under [TWEA or IEEPA]; and
(B) does not include property that—
(i) is subject to a license issued by the United States Government for final payment, transfer, or
disposition by or to a person subject to the jurisdiction of the United States in connection with a
transaction for which the issuance of such license has been specifically required by statute other
than [IEEPA] or the United Nations Participation Act of 1945 (22 U.S.C. 287 et seq.); or
(ii) in the case of property subject to the Vienna Convention on Diplomatic Relations or the Vienna
Convention on Consular Relations, or that enjoys equivalent privileges and immunities under the
law of the United States, is being used exclusively for diplomatic or consular purposes.
188 P.L. 110-181 § 1083 (2008) (amending the Foreign Sovereign Immunities Act).
189 28 U.S.C. § 1610(g) (2018). It is unclear whether “regulated” property and “blocked asset” are meant to be
synonymous.
190 P.L. 112-158, Title V, §502, 126 Stat. 1258 (2012); P.L. 116-92, div. A, Title XII, §1226, 133 Stat. 1645 (2019),
both codified at 22 USC § 8772. The Supreme Court upheld this approach in Bank Markazi v. Peterson, 136 S. Ct.
1310 (2016). For an explanation of the case, see CRS Report R44967, Congress’s Power over Courts: Jurisdiction
Stripping and the Rule of Klein
, coordinated by Kevin M. Lewis.
191 See the Justice for United States Victims of State Sponsored Terrorism Act, P.L. 114-113, div. O, title IV (2015),
129 Stat. 3007, codified at 34 U.S.C. § 20144 (2018).
192 Ibid., for more information about the program and funding for it, see CRS In Focus IF10341, Justice for United
States Victims of State Sponsored Terrorism Act: Eligibility and Funding
, by Jennifer K. Elsea.
193 34 U.S.C. § 20144(e) (2018).
194 Ibid.
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Judicial Interpretation of IEEPA195
A number of lawsuits seeking to overturn actions taken pursuant to IEEPA have made their way
through the judicial system, including challenges to the breadth of congressionally delegated
authority and assertions of violations of constitutional rights. As demonstrated below, most of
these challenges have failed. The few challenges that succeeded did not seriously undermine the
overarching statutory scheme for sanctions.
Dames & Moore v. Regan
The breadth of presidential power under IEEPA is illustrated by the Supreme Court’s 1981
opinion in Dames & Moore v. Regan.196 In Dames & Moore, petitioners had challenged President
Carter’s executive order establishing regulations to further compliance with the terms of the
Algiers Accords, which the President had entered into to end the hostage crisis with Iran.197 Under
these agreements, the United States was obligated (1) to terminate all legal proceedings in U.S.
courts involving claims of U.S. nationals against Iran, (2) to nullify all attachments and
judgments, and (3) to resolve outstanding claims exclusively through binding arbitration in the
Iran-U.S. Claims Tribunal (IUSCT). The President, through executive orders, revoked all licenses
that permitted the exercise of “any right, power, or privilege” with regard to Iranian funds,
nullified all non-Iranian interests in assets acquired after a previous blocking order, and required
banks holding Iranian assets to transfer them to the Federal Reserve Bank of New York to be held
or transferred as directed by the Secretary of the Treasury.198
Dames and Moore had sued Iran for breach of contract to recover compensation for work
performed.199 The district court had entered summary judgment in favor of Dames and Moore and
issued an order attaching certain Iranian assets for satisfaction of any judgment that might
result,200 but stayed the case pending appeal.201 The executive orders and regulations
implementing the Algiers Accords resulted in the nullification of this prejudgment attachment and
the dismissal of the case against Iran, directing that it be filed at the IUSCT.
In response, Dames and Moore sued the government. The plaintiffs claimed that the President and
the Secretary of the Treasury exceeded their statutory and constitutional powers to the extent they
adversely affected Dames and Moore’s judgment against Iran, the execution of that judgment, the
prejudgment attachments, and the plaintiff’s ability to continue to litigate against the Iranian
banks.202
The government defended its actions, relying largely on IEEPA, which provided explicit support
for most of the measures taken—nullification of the prejudgment attachment and transfer of the

195 This section was authored by Jennifer K. Elsea, Legislative Attorney, American Law Division (ALD), CRS.
196 453 U.S. 654 (1981).
197 Declaration of the Government of the Democratic and Popular Republic of Algeria Relating to the Commitments
Made by Iran and the United States and Declaration of the Democratic and Popular Republic of Algeria Concerning the
Settlement of Claims by the Government of the United States of America and the Government of the Islamic Republic
of Iran, 20 I.L.M. 223 (1981) (collectively “Algiers Accords”).
198 E.O. 12170, 44 Fed. Reg. 65,729 (Nov. 14, 1979); E.O. 12279, 46 Fed. Reg. 7,919 (Jan. 19, 1981).
199 Dames & Moore, 453 U.S. at 644.
200 Ibid.
201 Ibid. at 666.
202 Ibid. at 666-67.
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property to Iran—but could not be read to authorize actions affecting the suspension of claims in
U.S. courts. Justice Rehnquist wrote for the majority:
Although we have declined to conclude that the IEEPA…directly authorizes the
President’s suspension of claims for the reasons noted, we cannot ignore the general tenor
of Congress’ legislation in this area in trying to determine whether the President is acting
alone or at least with the acceptance of Congress. As we have noted, Congress cannot
anticipate and legislate with regard to every possible action the President may find it
necessary to take or every possible situation in which he might act. Such failure of Congress
specifically to delegate authority does not, “especially . . . in the areas of foreign policy
and national security,” imply “congressional disapproval” of action taken by the Executive.
On the contrary, the enactment of legislation closely related to the question of the
President’s authority in a particular case which evinces legislative intent to accord the
President broad discretion may be considered to “invite” “measures on independent
presidential responsibility.” At least this is so where there is no contrary indication of
legislative intent and when, as here, there is a history of congressional acquiescence in
conduct of the sort engaged in by the President.203
The Court remarked that Congress’s implicit approval of the long-standing presidential practice
of settling international claims by executive agreement was critical to its holding that the
challenged actions were not in conflict with acts of Congress.204 For support, the Court cited to
Justice Frankfurter’s concurrence in Youngstown Sheet and Tube Co. v. Sawyer205 stating that “a
systematic, unbroken, executive practice, long pursued to the knowledge of the Congress and
never before questioned … may be treated as a gloss on ‘Executive Power’ vested in the President
by § 1 of Art. II.”206 Consequently, it may be argued that Congress’s exclusion of certain express
powers in IEEPA do not necessarily preclude the President from exercising them, at least where a
court finds sufficient precedent exists.
Lower courts have examined IEEPA under a number of other constitutional doctrines.
Separation of Powers—Non-Delegation Doctrine
Courts have reviewed whether Congress violated the non-delegation principle of separation of
powers by delegating too much power to the President to legislate, in particular by creating new
crimes.207 These challenges have generally failed.208 As the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Second

203 Dames & Moore, 453 U.S. at 678-79 (internal citations omitted).
204 Ibid. at 680 (citing the International Claims Settlement Act of 1949, 64 Stat. 13, codified as amended at 22 U.S.C. §
1621 et seq. (1976 ed. and Supp. IV)).
205 Youngstown Sheet and Tube Co. v. Sawyer, 343 U.S. 579, 610-11 (1952).
206 Dames & Moore, 453 U.S. at 686 (citing Youngstown, 343 U.S. at 610-11 (Frankfurter, J., concurring)).
207 United States v. Dhafir, 461 F.3d 211, 212–13 (2d Cir. 2006) (appeal of whether IEEPA constitutes an appropriate
delegation of congressional authority to the executive).
208 United States v. Amirnazmi, 645 F.3d 564, 576 (3d Cir. 2011) (upholding IEEPA’s delegation of authority to the
President); United States v. Mirza, 454 F. App’x 249, 256 (5th Cir. 2011) (same); Dhafir, 461 F.3d at 216-17 (same);
United States v. Arch Trading Co., 987 F.2d 1087, 1092–94 (4th Cir.1993) (same); see also United States v.
Nazemzadeh, No. 11 CR 5726 L, 2014 WL 310460, at *8 (S.D. Cal. Jan. 28, 2014); United States v. Vaghari, No.
CRIM.A. 08-693-01-02, 2009 WL 2245097, at *1 (E.D. Pa. July 27, 2009); Clancy v. Office of Foreign Assets Control,
No. 05–C–580, 2007 WL 1051767, at *20–21 (E.D. Wis. Mar. 31, 2007), aff'd, 559 F.3d 595 (7th Cir.2009); United
States v. Chalmers, 474 F. Supp. 2d 555, 566–68 (S.D.N.Y. 2007); United States v. Esfahani, No. 05–CR–0255, 2006
WL 163025, at *1–4 (N.D. Ill. Jan. 17, 2006); United States v. Anvari-Hamedani, 378 F. Supp. 2d 821, 829–30 (N.D.
Ohio 2005); Global Relief Found., Inc. v. O'Neill, 207 F. Supp. 2d 779, 807 (N.D.Ill. 2002), aff'd, 315 F.3d 748 (7th
Cir. 2002).
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Circuit explained while evaluating IEEPA, delegations of congressional authority are
constitutional so long as Congress provides through a legislative act an “intelligible principle”
governing the exercise of the delegated authority.209 Even if the standards are higher for
delegations of authority to define criminal offenses, the court held, IEEPA provides sufficient
guidance.210 The court stated:
The IEEPA “meaningfully constrains the [President's] discretion,” by requiring that “[t]he
authorities granted to the President ... may only be exercised to deal with an unusual and
extraordinary threat with respect to which a national emergency has been declared.” And
the authorities delegated are defined and limited.211
The Second Circuit found it significant that “IEEPA relates to foreign affairs—an area in which
the President has greater discretion,”212 bolstering its view that IEEPA does not violate the non-
delegation doctrine.
Separation of Powers—Legislative Veto
The U.S. Court of Appeals for the Eleventh Circuit considered whether Section 207(b) of IEEPA
is an unconstitutional legislative veto. That provision states:
The authorities described in subsection (a)(1) may not continue to be exercised under this
section if the national emergency is terminated by the Congress by concurrent resolution
pursuant to section 202 of the National Emergencies Act [50 U.S.C. § 1622] and if the
Congress specifies in such concurrent resolution that such authorities may not continue to
be exercised under this section.213
In U.S. v. Romero-Fernandez, two defendants convicted of violating the terms of an executive
order issued under IEEPA argued on appeal that IEEPA was unconstitutional, in part, because of
the above provision. The Eleventh Circuit accepted that the provision was an unconstitutional
legislative veto (as conceded by the government) based on INS v. Chadha,214 in which the
Supreme Court held that Congress cannot void the exercise of power by the executive branch
through concurrent resolution, but can act only through bicameral passage followed by
presentment of the law to the President.215 The Eleventh Circuit nevertheless upheld the
defendants’ convictions for violations of IEEPA regulations,216 holding that the legislative veto
provision was severable from the rest of the statute.217

209 Dhafir, 461 F.3d at 215 (citing Mistretta v. United States, 488 U.S. 361, 372 (1989)).
210 Ibid. at 216 (“Even if a heightened standard should apply to delegations concerning criminal offenses, the IEEPA's
delegation is subject to constraints similar to those found sufficient in [Touby v. United States, 500 U.S. 160, 111
(1991)]”); see also Amirnazmi, 645 F.3d at 576 (“We too conclude that IEEPA “meaningfully constrains” the
President's discretion.”); Arch Trading Co., 987 F.2d at 1092–94 (holding “constraining factors” in IEEPA sufficient to
conclude the President's powers are “explicitly defined and circumscribed”).
211 Dhafir, 461 F.3d at 216-17 (internal citations omitted).
212 Ibid. at 217 (citing Dames & Moore, 453 U.S. at 675).
213 50 U.S.C. § 1706(b) (2018).
214 United States v. Romero-Fernandez, 983 F.2d 195, 196 (11th Cir. 1993) (citing Chadha, 462 U.S. 919 (1983)).
215 Chadha, 462 U.S. at 954–55.
216 Romero-Fernandez, 983 F.2d at 197 (“Because [defendants] were charged and convicted under 50 U.S.C. § 1705(b),
and this section is not affected by the unconstitutionality of § 1706(b), the constitutionality of the legislative veto is
irrelevant to their convictions.”).
217 Ibid., 196 (finding that the balance of IEEPA is capable of functioning independently and noting Congress’s
inclusion of a severability clause).
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Fifth Amendment “Takings” Clause
Courts have also addressed whether certain actions taken pursuant to IEEPA have effected an
uncompensated taking of property rights in violation of the Fifth Amendment. The Fifth
Amendment’s Takings Clause prohibits “private property [from being] taken for public use,
without just compensation.”218 The Fifth Amendment’s prohibitions apply as well to regulatory
takings, in which the government does not physically take property but instead imposes
restrictions on the right of enjoyment that decreases the value of the property or right therein.219
The Supreme Court has held that the nullification of prejudgment attachments pursuant to
regulations issued under IEEPA was not an uncompensated taking, suggesting that the reason for
this position was the contingent nature of the licenses that had authorized the attachments.220 The
Court also suggested that the broader purpose of the statute supported the view that there was no
uncompensated taking:
This Court has previously recognized that the congressional purpose in authorizing
blocking orders is “to put control of foreign assets in the hands of the President....” Such
orders permit the President to maintain the foreign assets at his disposal for use in
negotiating the resolution of a declared national emergency. The frozen assets serve as a
“bargaining chip” to be used by the President when dealing with a hostile country.
Accordingly, it is difficult to accept petitioner’s argument because the practical effect of it
is to allow individual claimants throughout the country to minimize or wholly eliminate
this “bargaining chip” through attachments, garnishments, or similar encumbrances on
property. Neither the purpose the statute was enacted to serve nor its plain language
supports such a result.221
Similarly, a lower court held that the extinguishment of contractual rights due to sanctions
enacted pursuant to IEEPA does not amount to a regulatory taking requiring compensation under
the Fifth Amendment.222 Even though the plaintiff suffered “obvious economic loss” due to the
sanctions regulations, that factor alone was not enough to sustain plaintiff's claim of a

218 U.S. Const. Amdt. V.
219 See Paradissiotis v. United States, 49 Fed. Cl. 16, 20 (2001) (describing a regulatory taking as “not involv[ing]
physical invasion or seizure of property [but rather] concern[ing] action that affects an owner’s use of property, …
based on the ‘general rule ... that while property may be regulated to a certain extent, if regulation goes too far it will be
recognized as a taking’”) (citing Penn. Coal Co. v. Mahon, 260 U.S. 393, 415 (1922)), aff’d, 304 F.3d 1271 (Fed. Cir.
2002).
220 Dames & Moore, 453 U.S. at 673 n. 6. (noting that “an American claimant may not use an attachment that is subject
to a revocable license and that has been obtained after the entry of a freeze order to limit in any way the actions the
President may take” pursuant to IEEPA).
221 Ibid. at 673–674; see also Marschalk Co. v. Iran Nat. Airlines Corp., 657 F.2d 3, 4 (2d Cir. 1981) (“The President's
action in nullifying the attachments did not constitute a taking of property for which compensation must be paid.”).
222 767 Third Ave. Assocs. v. United States, 48 F.3d 1575, 1581 (Fed. Cir. 1995) (landlord leasing office space to a
foreign government “did so against the backdrop of the government’s foreign policy power” and did not have
reasonable investment-backed expectation that its contract would be fulfilled); Rockefeller Ctr. Properties v. United
States, 32 Fed. Cl. 586, 592 (1995) (“[T]hose who trade with foreign governments must… take the President’s power
into account in structuring their transactions.”); Chang v. United States, 859 F.2d 893, 897 (Fed. Cir. 1988) ([T]hose
who enter into employment contracts overseas do so in light of one salient fact of economic life: that their ability to
perform and compel performance is contingent upon the continuation of friendly relations between nations” (citing
Chang v. United States, 13 Cl. Ct. 555, 559-60 (1987)); Paradissiotis, 49 Fed. Cl. at 21 (holding there was no taking
because “plaintiff'’s [stock options] were ‘in every sense subordinate to the President’s power under the IEEPA.’”).
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compensable taking.223 The court quoted long-standing Supreme Court precedent to support its
finding:
A new tariff, an embargo, a draft, or a war may inevitably bring upon individuals great
losses; may, indeed, render valuable property almost valueless. They may destroy the worth
of contracts. But whoever supposed that, because of this, a tariff could not be changed, or
a non-intercourse act, or an embargo be enacted, or a war be declared? .... [W]as it ever
imagined this was taking private property without compensation or without due process of
law?224
Accordingly, it seems unlikely that entities whose business interests are harmed by the imposition
of sanctions pursuant to IEEPA will be entitled to compensation from the government for their
losses.
Persons whose assets have been directly blocked by the U.S. Department of the Treasury Office
of Foreign Assets Control (OFAC) pursuant to IEEPA have likewise found little success
challenging the loss of the use of their assets as uncompensated takings.225 Many courts have
recognized that a temporary blocking of assets does not constitute a taking because it is a
temporary action that does not vest title in the United States.226 This conclusion is apparently so
even if the blocking of assets necessitates the closing altogether of a business enterprise.227 In
some circumstances, however, a court may analyze at least the initial blocking of assets under a
Fourth Amendment standard for seizure.228 One court found a blocking to be unreasonable under
a Fourth Amendment standard where there was no reason that OFAC could not have first
obtained a judicial warrant.229
Fifth Amendment “Due Process” Clause
Some persons whose assets have been blocked have asserted that their right to due process has
been violated. The Due Process Clause of the Fifth Amendment provides that no person shall be
deprived of life, liberty, or property, without due process of law.230 Where one company protested
that the blocking of its assets without a pre-deprivation hearing violated its right to due process, a
district court found that a temporary deprivation of property does not necessarily give rise to a
right to notice and an opportunity to be heard.231 A second district court stated that the exigencies

223 Paradissiotis, 49 Fed. Cl. at 21.
224 Ibid. (citing Knox v. Lee, 79 U.S. 457, 551 (1870), quoted in Chang, 859 F.2d at 897).
225 Glob. Relief Found., Inc. v. O’Neill, 207 F. Supp. 2d 779, 802 (N.D. Ill.) (“Takings claims have often been raised—
and consistently rejected—in the IEEPA context.”), aff'd, 315 F.3d 748 (7th Cir. 2002).
226 Ibid. (citing Tran Qui Than v. Regan, 658 F.2d 1296, 1304 (9th Cir.1981); Miranda v. Secretary of Treasury, 766
F.2d 1, 5 (1st Cir.1985)); Holy Land Found. for Relief & Dev. v. Ashcroft, 219 F. Supp. 2d 57, 78–79 (D.D.C. 2002)
(“[T]he case law is clear that a blocking of this nature does not constitute a seizure.” (citations omitted)), aff'd, 333 F.3d
156 (D.C. Cir. 2003).
227 IPT Co. v. U.S. Dep’t of Treasury, No. 92 CIV. 5542 (JFK), 1994 WL 613371, at *5 (S.D.N.Y. 1994) (holding that
the blocking of assets is not a taking as title to the property has not vested in the Government, the company IPT did not
become a government-owned enterprise, and any proceeds from a sale of the business or its assets will still vest in its
owners, who may claim such assets when the blocking order is lifted).
228 KindHearts for Charitable Humanitarian Dev., Inc. v. Geithner, 647 F. Supp. 2d 857, 872 (N.D. Ohio 2009); Al–
Haramain Islamic Foundation, Inc. v. U.S. Dept. of Treasury, 585 F. Supp.2d 1233, 1263 (D. Or. 2008).
229 KindHearts, 647 F. Supp. 2d at 883.
230 U.S. Const. Amdt V.
231 IPT Co., 1994 WL 613371, at *6 (citing United States v. James Daniel Good Real Property, 114 S. Ct. 492, 498
(1993); Mathews v. Eldridge, 424 U.S. 319, 333–34 (1976)).
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of national security and foreign policy considerations that are implicated in IEEPA cases have
meant that OFAC historically has not provided pre-deprivation notice in sanctions programs.232 A
third district court stated that OFAC’s failure to provide a charitable foundation with notice or a
hearing prior to its designation as a terrorist organization and blocking of its assets did not violate
its right to procedural due process, because the OFAC designation and blocking order serve the
important governmental interest of combating terrorism by curtailing the flow of terrorist
financing.233 That same court also held that prompt action by the government was necessary to
protect against the transfer of assets subject to the blocking order.234
In Al Haramain Islamic Foundation v. U.S. Department of Treasury, the U.S. Court of Appeals
for the Ninth Circuit considered whether OFAC’s use of classified information without any
disclosure of its content in its decision to freeze the assets of a charitable organization, and its
failure to provide adequate notice and a meaningful opportunity to respond, violated the
organization’s right to procedural due process.235 The court applied the balancing test set forth by
the Supreme Court in its landmark administrative law case Mathews v. Eldridge236 to resolve
these questions.237 Under the Eldridge test, to determine if an individual has received
constitutional due process, courts must weigh:
(1) [the person's or entity's] private property interest,
(2) the risk of an erroneous deprivation of such interest through the procedures used, as
well as the value of additional safeguards, and
(3) the Government's interest in maintaining its procedures, including the burdens of
additional procedural requirements.”238
While weighing the interests and risks at issue in Al Haramain, the Ninth Circuit found the
organization’s property interest to be significant:
By design, a designation by OFAC completely shutters all domestic operations of an entity.
All assets are frozen. No person or organization may conduct any business whatsoever with
the entity, other than a very narrow category of actions such as legal defense. Civil penalties
attach even for unwitting violations. Criminal penalties, including up to 20 years'
imprisonment, attach for willful violations. For domestic organizations such as AHIF–
Oregon, a designation means that it conducts no business at all. The designation is
indefinite. Although an entity can seek administrative reconsideration and limited judicial
relief, those remedies take considerable time, as evidenced by OFAC's long administrative
delay in this case and the ordinary delays inherent in our judicial system. In sum,
designation is not a mere inconvenience or burden on certain property interests; designation
indefinitely renders a domestic organization financially defunct.239
Nevertheless, the court found “the government’s interest in national security [could not] be
understated.”240 In evaluating the government’s interest in maintaining its procedures, the Ninth

232 Glob. Relief Found., 207 F. Supp. 2d at 803–04 (emphasizing “the Executive's need for speed in these matters, and
the need to prevent the flight of assets and destruction of records”), aff'd, 315 F.3d 748 (7th Cir. 2002).
233 Holy Land Found., 219 F. Supp. 2d at 77 (D.D.C. 2002).
234 Ibid.
235 686 F.3d 965, 979 (9th Cir. 2012).
236 424 U.S. 319 (1976).
237 Al Haramain, 686 F.3d at 979.
238 Ibid. (citing Mathews, 424 U.S. at 334–35).
239 Ibid. at 979–80 (internal citations omitted).
240 Ibid. at 980.
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Circuit explained that the Constitution requires that the government “take reasonable measures to
ensure basic fairness to the private party and that the government follow procedures reasonably
designed to protect against erroneous deprivation of the private party’s interests.”241 While the
Ninth Circuit had previously held that the use of undisclosed information in a case involving the
exclusion of certain longtime resident aliens should be considered presumptively
unconstitutional,242 the court found that the presumption had been overcome in this case.243 The
Ninth Circuit noted that all federal courts that have considered the argument that OFAC may not
use undisclosed classified information in making its determinations have rejected it.244 Although
the court found that OFAC’s failure to provide even an unclassified summary of the information
at issue was a violation of the organization’s due process rights,245 the court deemed the error
harmless because it would not likely have affected the outcome of the case.246
In the same case, the Ninth Circuit also considered the organization’s argument that it had been
denied adequate notice and an opportunity to be heard.247 Specifically, the organization asserted
that OFAC had refused to disclose its reasons for investigating and designating the organization,
leaving it unable to respond adequately to OFAC’s unknown suspicions.248 Because OFAC had
provided the organization with only one document to support its designation over the four-year
period between the freezing of its assets and the redesignation of the organization as a specially
designated global terrorist (SDGT), the court agreed that the organization had been deprived of
due process rights.249 However, the court found that this error too was harmless.250
The U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia found that a foreign individual could not
challenge his designation as a specially designated national under IEEPA on due process grounds
because he had not established a sufficient connection with the United States to warrant
constitutional protections.251 The court acknowledged that the D.C. Circuit has not articulated a
specific test for determining whether a foreign national residing outside the United States
maintains the requisite “substantial connections” to avail himself of due process rights.252 The

241 Ibid.
242 Al Haramain, 686 F.3d at 981 (stating the use of classified information “should be presumptively unconstitutional”
(citing Am.–Arab Anti–Discrimination Comm. v. Reno, 70 F.3d 1045, 1070 (9th Cir.1995)).
243 Ibid. at 982 “[T]the use of classified information in the fight against terrorism, during a presidentially declared
“national emergency,” qualifies as sufficiently “extraordinary” to overcome the presumption.”).
244 Ibid. at 981 (citing Holy Land, 333 F.3d at 164; Global Relief Found., Inc. v. O'Neill, 315 F.3d 748, 754 (7th Cir.
2002); KindHearts for Charitable Humanitarian Dev., Inc. v. Geithner (KindHearts II), 710 F.Supp.2d 637, 660 (N.D.
Ohio 2010); Al–Aqeel v. Paulson, 568 F.Supp.2d 64, 72 (D.D.C. 2008)).
245 Ibid. at 984 (“OFAC's failure to pursue potential mitigation measures violated AHIF–Oregon's due process rights.”).
246 Ibid. at 990.
247 Ibid. at 984.
248 Ibid. at 984-85.
249 Al Haramain, 686 F.3d at 987 (holding that, at a minimum, OFAC must provide a timely statement of reasons for
the investigation).
250 Ibid. at 990 (“Even if [the organization] had enjoyed better access to classified information and constitutionally
adequate notice, we are confident that it would not have changed OFAC's ultimate designation determination.”).
251 Rakhimov v. Gacki, No. CV 19-2554 (JEB), 2020 WL 1911561, at *5 (D.D.C. Apr. 20, 2020) (citing People's
Mojahedin Org. of Iran v. U.S. Dep't of State, 182 F.3d 17, 22 (D.C. Cir. 1999)); see also Fulmen Co. v. Office of
Foreign Assets Control, No. CV 18-2949 (RJL), 2020 WL 1536341, at *5 (D.D.C. Mar. 31, 2020) (“Because Fulmen’s
own pleadings demonstrate no property or presence in the United States, it cannot establish the ‘substantial
connections’ necessary to potentially entitle it to constitutional protections as a non-resident alien.”).
252 Rakhimov, 2020 WL 1911561 at *5 (citing Nat'l Council of Resistance of Iran v. U.S. Dep't of State, 251 F.3d 192,
201–03 (D.C. Cir. 2001); 32 Cty. Sovereignty Comm. v. U.S. Dep't of State, 292 F.3d 797, 799 (D.C. Cir. 2002)).
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court held that, irrespective of the proper test, the individual had failed to meet the requisite
constitutional standard because he “ha[d] not established any connection to the United States, let
alone a substantial one.”253 The court did, however, hold that the foreign national retained the
right to procedural review under the Administrative Procedure Act (APA).254
First Amendment Challenges
Some courts have considered whether asset blocking or penalties imposed pursuant to regulations
promulgated under IEEPA have violated the subjects’ First Amendment rights to free association,
free speech, or religion. Challenges on these grounds have typically failed.255 Courts have held
that there is no First Amendment right to support terrorists.256 The U.S. Court of Appeals for the
District of Columbia Circuit distinguished advocacy from financial support and held that the
blocking of assets affected only the ability to provide financial support, but did not implicate the
organization’s freedom of association.257 Similarly, a district court interpreted relevant case law to
hold that government actions prohibiting charitable contributions are subject to intermediate
scrutiny rather than strict scrutiny, a higher standard that applies to political contributions.258
With respect to a free speech challenge brought by a charitable organization whose assets were
temporarily blocked during the pendency of an investigation, a district court explained that “when
‘speech’ and ‘nonspeech’ elements are combined in the same course of conduct, a sufficiently
important government interest in regulating the nonspeech element can justify incidental
limitations on First Amendment freedoms.”259 Accordingly, the district court applied the
following test to determine whether the designations and blocking actions were lawful. Citing the
Supreme Court’s opinion in United States v. O’Brien, the court stated that a government
regulation is sufficiently justified if:
(1) it is within the constitutional power of the government;

253 Ibid.
254 See ibid. at *6 (observing that the court must follow “the APA’s [5 U.S.C. § 706(2)(A)] ‘highly deferential
standard,’ meaning that [it] may set aside Treasury’s action ‘only if it is arbitrary, capricious, an abuse of discretion, or
otherwise not in accordance with law.’) (quoting Zevallos v. Obama, 793 F.3d 106, 112 (D.C. Cir. 2015)).
255 KindHearts, 647 F. Supp. 2d at 889 (“Courts have uniformly held that OFAC's blocking and designation authorities
do not reach a substantial amount of protected speech, and that its restrictions are narrowly tailored.”). Islamic Am.
Relief Agency v. Unidentified FBI Agents, 394 F. Supp. 2d 34, 52–55 (D.D.C. 2005) (rejecting claims that OFAC
blocking action violated plaintiff's First Amendment freedom of speech, freedom of association and freedom of
religion, and noting that “nothing in the IEEPA or the executive order prohibits [the plaintiff] from expressing its
views”); United States v. Lindh, 212 F. Supp. 2d 541, 570 (E.D. Va. 2002) (“The First Amendment's guarantee of
associational freedom is no license to supply terrorist organizations with resources or material support in any form,
including services as a combatant.”).
256 Islamic Am. Relief Agency v. Gonzales, 477 F.3d 728, 735 (D.C. Cir. 2007) (holding that “where an organization is
found to have supported terrorism, government actions to suspend that support are not unconstitutional” under the First
Amendment); Holy Land, 333 F.3d at 166 (holding “as other courts have,” with respect to a First Amendment right to
association claim, that “there is no First Amendment right nor any other constitutional right to support terrorists” (citing
Humanitarian Law Project v. Reno, 205 F.3d 1130, 1133 (9th Cir. 2000)).
257 Islamic Am. Relief Agency, 477 F.3d at 736 (“The blocking was not based on, nor does it prohibit, associational
activity other than financial support.”).
258 Kadi v. Geithner, 42 F. Supp. 3d 1, 32 (D.D.C. 2012) (noting cases that concluded that intermediate scrutiny applies
to a designation as a specially designated global terrorist (SDGT) and blocking order affecting funds purportedly
intended for charitable purposes).
259 Glob. Relief Found., 207 F. Supp. 2d at 806 (citing United States v. O'Brien, 391 U.S. 367, 376–77 (1968)), aff'd on
other ground
s, 315 F.3d 748 (7th Cir. 2002).
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(2) it furthers an important or substantial governmental interest;
(3) the governmental interest is unrelated to the suppression of free expression; and
(4) the incidental restriction on alleged First Amendment freedoms is no greater than is
essential to the furtherance of that interest.260
The court found the government’s actions to fall within the bounds of this test:
First, the President clearly had the power to issue the Executive Order. Second, the
Executive Order promotes an important and substantial government interest—that of
preventing terrorist attacks. Third, the government's action is unrelated to the suppression
of free expression; it prohibits the provision of financial and other support to terrorists.
Fourth, the incidental restrictions on First Amendment freedoms are no greater than
necessary.261
However, with respect to an organization that was not itself designated as an SDGT but wished to
conduct coordinated advocacy with another organization that was so designated, one appellate
court found that an OFAC regulation barring such coordinated advocacy based on its content was
subject to strict scrutiny.262 Accordingly, the court rejected the government’s reliance on the
Supreme Court’s decision in Holder v. Humanitarian Law Project263 to find that the regulation
impermissibly implicated the organization’s right to free speech.264 Accordingly, there may be
some circumstances where the First Amendment protects speech coordinated with (but not on
behalf of) an organization designated as an SDGT.
Use of IEEPA to Continue Enforcing the Export Administration Act (EAA)
Until the recent enactment of the Export Control Reform Act of 2018,265 export of dual use goods
and services was regulated pursuant to the authority of the Export Administration Act (EAA),266
which was subject to periodic expiry and reauthorization. President Reagan was the first President
to use IEEPA as a vehicle for continuing the enforcement of the EAA’s export controls.267
After Congress did not extend the expired EAA, President Reagan issued Executive Order 12444
in 1983, finding that “unrestricted access of foreign parties to United States commercial goods,
technology, and technical data and the existence of certain boycott practices of foreign nations
constitute, in light of the expiration of the Export Administration Act of 1979, an unusual and
extraordinary threat to the national security.”268 Although the EAA had been reauthorized for
short periods since its initial expiration in 1983, every subsequent President utilized the

260 Ibid. (citing O’Brien, 391 U.S. at 376-77).
261 Ibid.
262 Al Haramain, 686 F.3d at 997 (holding strict scrutiny applies and that, “[a]ccordingly, the prohibition survives only
if it is narrowly tailored to advance the concededly compelling government interest of preventing terrorism”).
263 561 U.S. 1, 38 (2010) (upholding the prohibition on material support of terrorist organizations, 18 U.S.C. § 2339B,
against First Amendment challenge).
264 Al Haramain, 686 F.3d at 1001 (holding that under the prevailing fact circumstances, OFAC's content-based
prohibitions on speech violate the First Amendment).
265 P.L. 115-232, Title XVIII(B). In 2018, Congress passed the Export Control Reform Act to repeal the Export
Administration Act of 1979 and provide new statutory authority for the continuation of EAR. However, three sections
were not repealed and Congress directed their continued application through the exercise of IEEPA. See “The Export
Control Reform Act of 2018”
below.
266 P.L. 96-72, § 2, 93 Stat. 503 (1979), codified as amended at 50 U.S.C. §§ 4601-4623 (2018).
267 E.O. 12444, 48 Fed. Reg. 48,215 (Oct. 18, 1983).
268 Ibid.
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authorities granted under IEEPA to maintain the existing system of export controls during periods
of lapse. Figure 1.
In the latest iteration, President George W. Bush issued Executive Order 13222 in 2001, finding
the existence of a national emergency with respect to the expiration of the EAA and directing—
pursuant to the authorities allocated under IEEPA—that “the provisions for administration of the
[EAA] shall be carried out under this order so as to continue in full force and effect…the export
control system heretofore maintained.”269 Presidents Obama and Trump annually extended the
2001 executive order.270
Courts have generally treated this arrangement as authorized by Congress,271 although certain
provisions of the EAA in effect under IEEPA have led to challenges. The determining factor
appears to be whether IEEPA itself provides the President the authority to carry out the
challenged action. In one case, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit upheld a conviction
for an attempt to violate the regulations even though the EAA had expired and did not expressly
criminalize such attempts.272 The circuit court rejected the defendants’ argument that the President
had exceeded his delegated authority under the EEA by “enlarging” the crimes punishable under
the regulations.273
Nevertheless, a district court held that the conspiracy provisions of the EAA regulations were
rendered inoperative by the lapse of the EAA and “could not be repromulgated by executive order
under the general powers that IEEPA vests in the President.”274 The district court found that, even
if Congress intended to preserve the operation of the EAA through IEEPA, that intent was limited
by the scope of the statutes’ substantive coverage at the time of IEEPA’s enactment, when no
conspiracy provision existed in either statute.275
The U.S. Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit upheld the application of the EAA as a statute
permitting the government to withhold information under exemption 3 of the Freedom of
Information Act (FOIA),276 which exempts from disclosure information exempted from disclosure
by statute, even though the EAA had expired.277 Referring to legislative history it interpreted as
congressional approval of the use of IEEPA to continue the EAA provisions during periods of
lapse, the court stated:
Although the legislative history does not refer to the EAA’s confidentiality provision, it
does evince Congress's intent to authorize the President to preserve the operation of the
export regulations promulgated under the EAA. Moreover, it is significant for purposes of
determining legislative intent that Congress acted with the knowledge that the EAA’s
export regulations had long provided for confidentiality and that the President's ongoing

269 E.O. 13222, 66 Fed. Reg. 44,025 (Aug. 17, 2001).
270 See, e.g., Continuation of Emergency Regarding Export Control Regulations, 82 Fed. Reg. 39,005 (Aug. 15, 2017).
271 Owens v. Republic of Sudan, 374 F. Supp. 2d 1, 22 (D.D.C. 2005) (“Courts uniformly have read [the executive
order preserving the EAA regulations under IEEPA] to mean that the statute remained in full effect during the periods
of lapse.”). In this case, Sudan challenged its designation as a state sponsor of terrorism pursuant to a provision of the
EAA because the statute had expired.
272 United States v. Mechanic, 809 F.2d 1111, 1112-13 (5th Cir. 1987).
273 Ibid. at 1113-14 (emphasizing the foreign affairs connection served by the EAA).
274 United States v. Quinn, 401 F. Supp. 2d 80, 93 (D.D.C. 2005).
275 Ibid. at 95.
276 5 U.S.C. § 552(b)(3) (2018).
277 Wisconsin Project on Nuclear Arms Control v. U.S. Dep't of Commerce, 317 F.3d 275, 282 (D.C. Cir. 2003).
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practice of extending the EAA by executive order had always included these confidentiality
protections.278
The D.C. Circuit distinguished this holding in a later case involving appellate jurisdiction over a
decision by the Department of Commerce to apply sanctions for a company’s violation of the
EAA regulations.279 Pursuant to the regulations and under the direction of the Commerce
Department, the company sought judicial review directly in the D.C. Circuit.280 The D.C. Circuit,
however, concluded that it lacked jurisdiction:
This court would have jurisdiction pursuant to the President's order only if the President
has the authority to confer jurisdiction—an authority that, if it exists, must derive from
either the Executive's inherent power under the Constitution or a permissible delegation of
power from Congress. The former is unavailing, as the Constitution vests the power to
confer jurisdiction in Congress alone. Whether the executive order can provide the basis of
our jurisdiction, then, turns on whether the President can confer jurisdiction on this court
under the auspices of IEEPA….. We conclude that the President lacks that power. Nothing
in the text of IEEPA delegates to the President the authority to grant jurisdiction to any
federal court.281
Consequently, the appeal of the agency decision was determined to belong in the district court
according to the default rule under the Administrative Procedure Act (APA).282
Issues and Options for Congress
Congress may wish to address a number of issues with respect to IEEPA; two are addressed here.
The first pertains to how Congress has delegated its authority under IEEPA and its umbrella
statute, the NEA. The second pertains to choices made in the Export Control Reform Act of 2018.
Delegation of Authority under IEEPA
Although the stated aim of the drafters of the NEA and IEEPA was to restrain the use of
emergency powers, the use of such powers has expanded by several measures. Presidents declare
national emergencies and renew them for years or even decades. The limitation of IEEPA to
transactions involving some foreign interest was intended to limit IEEPA’s domestic application.
However, globalization has eroded that limit, as few transactions today do not involve some
foreign interest. Many of the other criticisms of TWEA that IEEPA was supposed to address—
consultation, time limits, congressional review, scope of power, and logical relationship to the
emergency declared—are criticisms that scholars levy against IEEPA today.283 TWEA came under
criticism because the first national emergency declared pursuant to its authority had been ongoing
for 41 years.284 In November 2020, the first emergency declared pursuant to authority under
IEEPA, the emergency with Iran declared in 1979, will enter is forty-first year.

278 Ibid.
279 Micei Int'l v. Dep't of Commerce, 613 F.3d 1147, 1150 (D.C. Cir. 2010).
280 Ibid. at 1151.
281 Ibid. at 1153 (internal citations omitted).
282 Ibid. at 1152 (citing 5 U.S.C. § 704 (2009)).
283 See, e.g., Jason Luong, “Forcing Constraint”; Jules Lobel, “Emergency Power and the Decline of Liberalism.”
284 See, e.g., “After 41 Years The Depression Finally Ending,” New York Times, Oct. 13, 1974; “Senate Votes to
Conclude 4 National Emergencies,” New York Times, Oct. 8, 1974; U.S. Congress, A Brief History of Emergency
Powers in the United States
, p. v.
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In general, three common criticisms are levied by scholars with respect to the structure of the
NEA and IEEPA that may be of interest to Congress. First, the NEA and IEEPA do not define the
phrases “national emergency” and “unusual and extraordinary threat” and Presidents have
interpreted these terms broadly. Second, the scope of presidential authority under IEEPA has
become less constrained in a highly globalized era. Third, owing to rulings by the Supreme Court
and amendments to the NEA, Congress would likely have to have a two-thirds majority rather
than a simple majority to terminate a national emergency. Despite these criticisms, Congress has
not acted to terminate or otherwise express displeasure with an emergency declaration invoking
IEEPA. This absence of any explicit statement of disapproval, coupled with explicit statements of
approval in some instances, may indicate congressional approval of presidential use of IEEPA
thus far. Arguably, then, IEEPA could be seen as an effective tool for carrying out the will of
Congress.
Definition of “National Emergency” and “Unusual and Extraordinary Threat”
Neither the NEA nor IEEPA define what constitutes a “national emergency.” IEEPA conditions its
invocation in a declaration on its necessity for dealing with an “unusual and extraordinary threat
… to the national security, foreign policy, or economy of the United States.”285 In the markup of
IEEPA in the House, Fred Bergsten, then-Assistant Secretary for International Affairs in the
Department of the Treasury, praised the requirement that a national emergency for the purposes of
IEEPA be “based on an unusual and extraordinary threat” because such language “emphasizes
that such powers should be available only in true emergencies.”286 Because “unusual” and
“extraordinary” are also undefined, the usual and ordinary invocation of the statute seems to
conflict with those statutory conditions.
If Congress wanted to refine the meaning of “national emergency” or “unusual and extraordinary
threat,” it could do so through statute. Additionally, Congress could consider requiring some sort
of factual finding by a court prior to, or shortly after, the exercise of any authority, such as under
the First Militia Act of 1792287 or the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act.288 However,
Congress may consider that the ambiguity in the existing statute provides the executive with the
flexibility necessary to address national emergencies with the requisite dispatch.
Scope of the Authority
While IEEPA nominally applies only to foreign transactions, the breadth of the phrase, “any
interest of any foreign country or a national thereof” leaves a great deal of room for executive
discretion. The interconnectedness of the modern global economy has left few major transactions
in which a foreign interest is not involved.289 As a result, at least one scholar has concluded, “the

285 50 U.S.C. § 1701.
286 House Markup, p. 12.
287 Using the judiciary to determine whether an emergency authority can be exercised by the executive has been
common. The First Militia Act of 1792, for example, required that either an associate justice of the Supreme Court of a
district judge confirm that an insurrection “too powerful to be suppressed by the ordinary course of judicial
proceedings” existed. Act of May 2, 1792, ch. 28, 1 Stat. 264. Using a court to determine whether an emergency
existed and whether an action was necessary was also the method favored by the German-American jurist, advisor to
President Abraham Lincoln, and founder of American political science, Francis Lieber, who argued that the acts of
officials in states of emergency should be adjudged in court “to be necessary in the judgment of a moderate and
reasonable man.” Qtd. in Witt, “A Lost Theory of American Emergency Constitutionalism,” p. 588.
288 50 U.S.C. §§ 1803-1805.
289 “The International Emergency Economic Powers Act,” Harvard Law Review, p. 1111 n49.
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exemption of purely domestic transactions from the President’s transaction controls seems to be a
limitation without substance.”290
Presidents have used IEEPA since the 1980s to control exports by maintaining the dual-use export
control system, enshrined in the Export Administration Regulations (EAR) in times when its
underlying authorization, the Export Administration Act (EAA), periodically expired. During
those times when Congress did not reauthorize the EAA, Presidents have declared emergencies to
maintain the dual-use export control system.291 The current emergency has been ongoing since
2001.292
While Presidents have used IEEPA to implement trade restrictions against adversaries, it has not
been used as a general way to impose tariffs. However, as noted above, President Nixon used
TWEA to impose a 10% ad valorem tariff on goods entering the United States to avoid a balance
of payments crisis after he ended the convertibility of the U.S. dollar to gold. Although the use of
TWEA in this instance was criticized at the time,293 the U.S. Court of Customs and Patent
Appeals upheld President Nixon’s actions294 and Congress maintained the language that President
Nixon relied upon in nearly identical form in the subsequent reforms resulting in the enactment of
IEEPA.295
The scope of powers over individual targets is also extensive. Under IEEPA, the President has the
power to prohibit all financial transactions with individuals designated by executive order. Such
power allows the President to block all the assets of a U.S. citizen or permanent resident.296
Such uses of IEEPA may reflect the will of Congress or they may represent a grant of authority
that may have gone beyond what Congress originally intended.

290 Ibid.; See also Thronson, “Toward Comprehensive Reform of America's Emergency Law Regime,” pp. 757-758.
291 In 2018, Congress passed the Export Control Reform Act to provide new statutory authority for the continuation of
EAR. However, three sections were not repealed and Congress directed their continued application through the exercise
of IEEPA. See “The Export Control Reform Act of 2018” below.
292 Ibid.
293 See, e.g., the testimony of Andreas F. Lowenfeld before the House Subcommittee on International Economic Policy
and Trade. U.S. Congress, House, Hearings Before the Subcommittee on International Economic Policy and Trade of
the Committee on International Relations and Markup of the Trading with the Enemy Reform Legislation
, 95th Cong.,
1st sess. (Washington, DC: GPO, 1977), pp. 8-9.
294 United States v. Yoshida Int'l, Inc., 526 F.2d 560, 573 (C.C.P.A. 1975) (“Congress, in enacting s 5(b) of the TWEA,
authorized the President, during an emergency, to […] ‘regulate importation,’ by imposing an import duty surcharge or
by other means appropriately and reasonably related […] to the particular nature of the emergency declared.”).
295 TWEA, codified as amended in 1971 at §5(b), provided that during a period of national emergency, the President
may “investigate, regulate, direct and compel, nullify, void, prevent, or prohibit, any acquisition holding, withholding,
use, transfer, withdrawal, transportation, importation or exportation of, or dealing in, or exercising any right, power, or
privilege with respect to, or transactions involving, any property in which any foreign country or a national thereof has
any interest.” IEEPA, as passed in 1977 at §203(a)(1)(B), provided that during a period of national emergency, the
President may “investigate, regulate, direct and compel, nullify, void, prevent or prohibit, any acquisition, holding,
withholding, use, transfer, withdrawal, transportation, importation or exportation of, or dealing in, or exercising any
right, power, or privilege with respect to, or transactions involving, any property in which any foreign country or a
national thereof has any interest.”
While he did not ultimately end up doing so, President Trump announced his intention to use IEEPA to impose and
gradually increase a five percent tariff on all goods imported from Mexico. Statement from the President Regarding
Emergency Measures to Address the Border Crisis, May 30, 2019, available at: https://www.whitehouse.gov/briefings-
statements/statement-president-regarding-emergency-measures-address-border-crisis/. See also CRS Insight IN11129,
The International Emergency Economic Powers Act (IEEPA) and Tariffs: Historical Background and Key Issues, by
Christopher A. Casey.
296 Thronson, “Toward Comprehensive Reform of America's Emergency Law Regime,” p. 759.
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Terminating National Emergencies or IEEPA Authorities
The heart of the curtailment of presidential power by the NEA and IEEPA was the provision that
Congress could terminate a state of emergency declared pursuant to the NEA with a concurrent
resolution. When the “legislative veto” was struck down by the Supreme Court (see above), it left
Congress with a steeper climb—presumably requiring passage of a veto-proof joint resolution—
to terminate a national emergency declared under the NEA.297 Two such resolutions have ever
been introduced and neither declarations of emergency involved IEEPA.298 The lack of
congressional action here could be the result of the necessity of obtaining a veto-proof majority or
it could be that the use of IEEPA has so far reflected the will of Congress.
If Congress wanted to assert more authority over the use of IEEPA, it could amend the NEA or
IEEPA to include a “sunset provision,” terminating any national emergency after a certain number
of days. At least one scholar has recommended such an amendment. 299 Alternatively, Congress
could amend IEEPA to provide for a review mechanism that would give Congress an active role.
In the Senate during the 116th Congress, for example, Senator Mike Lee introduced the Global
Trade Accountability Act, which required the President to report to Congress on any proposed
trade action (including the use of IEEPA), including a description of the proposal together with a
list of items to be affected, an economic impact study of the proposal including potential
retaliation. Congress, using expedited procedures, would need to approve the President’s action
through a joint resolution within a 45-day period. 300 Similarly, Senator Lee introduced the Article
One Act, a bill to provide for congressional approval of national emergency declarations, and for
other purposes, which would amend the NEA to require an act of Congress within 30 days to
allow a national emergency to continue.301 Several other bills have taken a similar approach.302
Alternatively, Congress could use any of these mechanisms to amend the current disapproval
resolution process in IEEPA or the NEA itself.
The Status Quo
In testimony before the House Committee on International Relations in 1977, Professor Harold G.
Maier summed up the main criticisms of TWEA:
Section 5(b)’s effect is no longer confined to “emergency situations” in the sense of
existing imminent danger. The continuing retroactive approval, either explicit or implicit,
by Congress of broad executive interpretations of the scope of powers which it confers has
converted the section into a general grant of legislative authority to the President…”303

297 Congress amended NEA in 1985 to require a joint resolution, which is subject to the President’s veto, to terminate
an emergency. P.L. 99-93 (Aug. 16, 1985), 99 Stat. 405.
298 In 2005, Rep. George Miller (CA) introduced a resolution to terminate the declaration of a national emergency as a
result of Hurricane Katrina. It was not considered. H.J.Res. 69 (Miller), 109th Cong., 1st sess., September 8, 2005. In
2019, Rep. Castro and Sen. Udall introduced resolutions to terminate the declaration of a national emergency with
respect to the Southern Border of the United States. H.J.Res. 46 (Castro), 116th Cong., 1st sess., Feb. 22, 2019; S.J.Res.
10 (Udall), 116th Cong., 1st sess., February 28, 2019. Neither emergency had invoked IEEPA authorities.
299 Luong, “Forcing Constraint,” p. 1181.
300 Global Trade and Accountability Act, S. 1284 (Lee), 116th Cong., 1st Sess., May 2, 2019.
301 Article One Act, S. 764 (Lee), 116th Cong., 1st sess., March 12, 2019.
302 See, e.g., Global Tarde Accountability Act, H.R. 723 (Davidson), 116th Cong., 1st sess., January 23, 2019;
Reclaiming Congressional Trade Authority Act of 2019 (Kaine), 116th Cong., 1st sess., March 27, 2019.
303 House, Trading with the Enemy Act Reform Legislation, p. 9.
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Like TWEA before it, IEEPA sits at the center of the modern U.S. sanction regime. Like TWEA
before it, Congress has often approved explicitly of the President’s use of IEEPA. In several
circumstances, Congress has directed the President to impose a variety of sanctions under IEEPA
and waived the requirement of an emergency declaration. Even when Congress has not given
explicit approval, no Member of Congress has ever introduced a resolution to terminate a national
emergency citing IEEPA.304 The NEA requires that both houses of Congress meet every six
months to consider a vote on a joint resolution on terminating an emergency.305 Neither house has
ever met to do so with respect to an emergency citing IEEPA. In response to concerns over the
scale and scope of the emergency economic powers granted by IEEPA, supporters of the status
quo would argue that Congress has implicitly and explicitly expressed approval of the statute and
its use. Indeed, Senator Lee’s Article One Act, which seeks to reform the NEA by requiring a
joint resolution of approval for an emergency to continue beyond 30 days, would explicitly
exclude its application to IEEPA.306
The Export Control Reform Act of 2018
In 2018, Congress passed the Export Control Reform Act (ECRA).307 The legislation repealed the
expired Export Administration Act of 1979,308 the regulations of which had been continued by
reference to IEEPA since 2001.309 The ECRA became the new statutory authority for Export
Administration Regulations. Nevertheless, several export controls addressed in the Export
Administration Act of 1979 were not updated in the Export Control Reform Act of 2018;310
instead, Congress chose to require the President to continue to use IEEPA to continue to
implement the three sections of the Export Administration Act of 1979 that were not repealed.311
Going forward, Congress may wish to revisit these provisions, which all relate to deterring the
proliferation of weapons of mass destruction.

304 Since the enactment of the NEA, two resolutions to terminate a national emergency have been introduced. The first
was to terminate the national emergency declared in response to Hurricane Katrina, but the declaration of emergency in
that case did not invoke IEEPA. H.J.Res. 69 (Miller), 109th Congress, 1st session, September 8, 2005. The second was
to terminate the national emergency declared February 15, 2019 with respect to the Southern Border of the United
States. H.J.Res. 46 (Castro), 116th Cong., 1st sess., Feb. 22, 2019; S.J.Res. 10 (Udall), 116th Cong., 1st sess., February
28, 2019. However, neither of the declarations of national emergency at issue invoked IEEPA.
305 50 U.S.C. § 1622(b).
306 Article One Act, S. 764 (Lee), 116th Cong., 1st sess., March 12, 2019, as reported to the Senate November 19, 2019.
307 P.L. 115-232 (Aug. 13, 2018), Title XVII(B).
308 Ibid. § 1766(a).
309 E.O. 13222.
310 Ibid. § 1766(a). Sections 11A, 11B, and 11C of the Export Administration Act of 1979, codified at 50 U.S.C. §§
4611, 4612, 4613, were not repealed.
311 Ibid. § 1766(b) (“The President shall implement [Sections 11A, 11B, and 11C of the Export Administration Act of
1979] by exercising the authorities of the President under the International Emergency Economic Powers Act (50
U.S.C. 1701 et seq.).”).
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Appendix A. NEA and IEEPA Use
Table A-1. National Emergencies Declared Pursuant to the NEA
*Greyed lines indicate emergencies declared pursuant to the NEA but that did not invoke IEEPA.
Title of E.O. or Procl. Declaring National
Date of
Date of
Originating
Revoking
Emergency Pursuant to NEA
Declaration
Revocation
E.O./Procl.
E.O./Procl.
Blocking Iranian Government Property
11/14/1979
Ongoing
12170

Sanctions Against Iran
4/17/1980
4/17/1981
12211

Continuation of Export Control Regulations
10/14/1983
12/20/1983
12444
12451
Continuation of Export Control Regulations
3/30/1984
7/12/1985
12470
12525
Prohibiting Trade and Certain Other
Transactions Involving Nicaragua
5/1/1985
3/13/1990
12513
12707
Prohibiting Trade and Certain Other
Transactions Involving South Africa
9/9/1985
7/10/1991
12532
12769
Prohibiting Trade and Certain Transactions
Involving Libya
1/7/1986
9/20/2004
12543
13357
Prohibiting Certain Transactions With Respect
to Panama
4/8/1988
4/5/1990
12635
12710
Blocking Iraqi Government Property and
Prohibiting Transactions with Iraq
8/2/1990
7/29/2004
12722
13350
Continuation of Export Control Regulations
9/30/1990
9/30/1993
12730
12867
Chemical and Biological Weapons Proliferation
11/16/1990
11/11/1994
12735
12938
Prohibiting Certain Transactions with Respect
to Haiti
10/4/1991
10/14/1994
12775
12932
Blocking "Yugoslav Government" Property and
Property of the Governments of Serbia and
Montenegro
5/30/1992
5/28/2003
12808
13304
To Suspend the Davis-Bacon Act of March 3,
1931, Within a Limited Geographic Area in
Response to the National Emergency Caused
by Hurricane Andrewa
10/14/1992
3/6/1993
6491
6534
Prohibiting Certain Transactions Involving
UNITA
9/26/1993
5/6/2003
12865
24857
Measures To Restrict The Participation By
United States Persons In Weapons
Proliferation Activities
9/30/1993
9/29/1994
12868
12930
Continuation of Export Control Regulations
6/30/1994
8/19/1994
12923
12924
Continuation of Export Control Regulations
8/19/1994
4/4/2001
12924
13206
Measures To Restrict The Participation By
United States Persons In Weapons
Proliferation Activities
9/29/1994
11/14/1994
12930
12938
Proliferation of Weapons of Mass Destruction
11/14/1994
Ongoing
12938

Prohibiting Transactions With Terrorists Who
Threaten To Disrupt the Middle East Peace
Process
1/23/1995
Ongoing
12947

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Title of E.O. or Procl. Declaring National
Date of
Date of
Originating
Revoking
Emergency Pursuant to NEA
Declaration
Revocation
E.O./Procl.
E.O./Procl.
Prohibiting Certain Transactions With Respect
to the Development of Iranian Petroleum
Resources
3/15/1995
Ongoing
12957

Blocking Assets and Prohibiting Transactions
With Significant Narcotics Traffickers
10/21/1995
Ongoing
12978

Regulation of the Anchorage and Movement of
Vessels with Respect to Cuba
3/1/1996
Ongoing
6867

Declaration of a State of Emergency and
Release of Feed Grain from the Disaster
Reserve
7/1/1996
6/30/1997
6907

Prohibiting New Investment in Burma
5/20/1997
10/7/2016
13047
13742
Blocking Sudanese Government Property and
Prohibiting Transactions With Sudan
11/3/1997
Ongoing
13067

Blocking Property of the Governments of the
Federal Republic of Yugoslavia (Serbia and
Montenegro), the Republic of Serbia, and the
Republic of Montenegro, and Prohibiting New
Investment in the Republic of Serbia in
Response to the Situation in Kosovo
6/9/1998
5/28/2003
13088
13304
Blocking Property and Prohibiting Transactions
With the Taliban
7/4/1999
7/2/2002
13129
13268
Blocking Property of the Government of the
Russian Federation Relating to the Disposition
of Highly Enriched Uranium Extracted From
Nuclear Weapons
6/21/2000
6/21/2012
13159

Prohibiting the Importation of Rough Diamonds
From Sierra Leone
1/18/2001
1/15/2004
13194
13324
Blocking Property of Persons Who Threaten
International Stabilization Efforts in the
Western Balkans
6/26/2001
Ongoing
13219

Continuation of Export Control Regulations
8/17/2001
Ongoing
13222

Declaration of National Emergency by Reason
of Certain Terrorist Attacks
9/14/2001
Ongoing
7463

Blocking Property and Prohibiting Transactions
With Persons Who Commit, Threaten To
Commit, or Support Terrorism
9/23/2001
Ongoing
13224

Blocking Property of Persons Undermining
Democratic Processes or Institutions in
Zimbabwe
3/6/2003
Ongoing
13288

Protecting the Development Fund for Iraq and
Certain Other Property in Which Iraq Has an
Interest
5/22/2003
Ongoing
13303

Blocking Property of Certain Persons and
Prohibiting the Export of Certain Goods to
Syria
5/11/2004
Ongoing
13338

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Title of E.O. or Procl. Declaring National
Date of
Date of
Originating
Revoking
Emergency Pursuant to NEA
Declaration
Revocation
E.O./Procl.
E.O./Procl.
Blocking Property of Certain Persons and
Prohibiting the Importation of Certain Goods
From Liberia
7/22/2004
11/12/2015
13348
13710
To Suspend Subchapter IV of Chapter 31 of
Title 40, United States Code, Within a Limited
Geographic Area in Response to the National
Emergency Caused by Hurricane Katrinab
9/8/2005
11/3/2005
7924
7959
Blocking Property of Certain Persons
Contributing to the Conflict in Cote d'Ivoire
2/7/2006
9/14/2016
13396
13739
Blocking Property of Certain Persons
Undermining Democratic Processes or
Institutions in Belarus
6/16/2006
Ongoing
13405

Blocking Property of Certain Persons
Contributing to the Conflict in the Democratic
Republic of the Congo
10/27/2006
Ongoing
13413

Blocking Property of Persons Undermining the
Sovereignty of Lebanon or Its Democratic
Processes and Institutions
8/1/2007
Ongoing
13441

Continuing Certain Restrictions With Respect
to North Korea and North Korean Nationals
6/26/2008
Ongoing
13466

Declaration of a National Emergency With
Respect to the 2009 H1N1 Influenza Pandemic
10/23/2009
10/22/2010
8443

Blocking Property of Certain Persons
Contributing to the Conflict in Somalia
4/12/2010
Ongoing
13536

Blocking Property and Prohibiting Certain
Transactions Related to Libya
2/25/2011
Ongoing
13566

Blocking Property of Transnational Criminal
Organizations
7/24/2011
Ongoing
13581

Blocking Property of Persons Threatening the
Peace, Security, or Stability of Yemen
5/16/2012
Ongoing
13611

Blocking Property of the Government of the
Russian Federation Relating to the Disposition
of Highly Enriched Uranium Extracted From
Nuclear Weapons
6/25/2012
5/26/2015
13617
13695
Blocking Property of Certain Persons
Contributing to the Situation in Ukraine
3/6/2014
Ongoing
13660

Blocking Property of Certain Persons With
Respect to South Sudan
4/3/2014
Ongoing
13664

Blocking Property of Certain Persons
Contributing to the Conflict in the Central
African Republic
5/12/2014
Ongoing
13667

Blocking Property and Suspending Entry of
Certain Persons Contributing to the Situation
in Venezuela
3/8/2015
Ongoing
13692

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Title of E.O. or Procl. Declaring National
Date of
Date of
Originating
Revoking
Emergency Pursuant to NEA
Declaration
Revocation
E.O./Procl.
E.O./Procl.
Blocking the Property of Certain Persons
Engaging in Significant Malicious Cyber-Enabled
Activities
4/1/2015
Ongoing
13694

Blocking Property of Certain Persons
Contributing to the Situation in Burundi
11/22/2015
Ongoing
13712

Blocking the Property of Persons Involved in
Serious Human Rights Abuse or Corruption
12/20/2017
Ongoing
13818

Imposing Certain Sanctions in the Event of
Foreign Interference in a United States Election 9/12/2018
Ongoing
13848

Blocking Property of Certain Persons
Contributing to the Situation in Nicaragua
11/27/2018
Ongoing
13851

Declaring a National Emergency Concerning
the Southern Border of the United States
2/15/2019
Ongoing
9844

Securing the Information and Communications
Technology and Services Supply Chain
5/15/2019
Ongoing
13873

Blocking Property and Suspending Entry of
Certain Persons Contributing to the Situation
in Mali
07/26/2019
Ongoing
13882

Blocking Property and Suspending Entry of
Certain Persons Contributing to the Situation
in Syria
10/17/2019
Ongoing
13894

Declaring a National Emergency Concerning
the Novel Coronavirus Disease (COVID-19)
Outbreak
03/13/2020
Ongoing
9994

Securing the United States Bulk-Power System
05/01/2020
Ongoing
13920

Blocking Property of Certain Persons
Associated With the International Criminal
Court
06/11/2020
Ongoing
13928

Source: CRS
Notes: Greyed lines indicate emergencies declared pursuant to the NEA that did not invoke IEEPA.
a. Although the President did not explicitly use that phrase “declare a national emergency,” the Davis-Bacon
act, as amended at the date of the proclamation, and as noted in the proclamation, provided for the
suspension of the act’s provisions “in the event of a national emergency.”
b. Similar to the suspension of the Davis-Bacon act in 1992, this proclamation was somewhat anomalous. The
proclamation did not cite to the NEA when declaring a national emergency for the purposes of suspending
the act. However, the revoking proclamation did cite the NEA. Moreover, Rep. George Mil er (CA)
introduced a resolution to terminate the declaration of a national emergency pursuant to the NEA. H.J.Res.
69 (Mil er), 109th Cong., 1st sess., September 8, 2005.
Table A-2. IEEPA National Emergency Use by Executive Order
In chronological order, from first use (1979) to present day (January 2019)
Country or Issue of
Executive Order
Concern
Sanction/Remedy
Current Status
Administration of President Jimmy Carter (1977-1981)
Congressional Research Service
51

The International Emergency Economic Powers Act: Origins, Evolution, and Use

Country or Issue of
Executive Order
Concern
Sanction/Remedy
Current Status
12170
Iran (hostage taking)
Declares national
Revoked and replaced,
(Nov. 14. 1979; 44 FR
emergency; blocks Iran
E.O. 13599 (2012)
65729)
government property
12205
Iran (hostage taking)
Prohibits certain
Revoked in part by E.O.
(Apr. 7, 1980; 45 FR
transactions
12282 (1981)
24099)
12211
Iran (hostage taking)
Prohibits transactions
Revoked in part by E.O.
(Apr. 17, 1980; 45 FR
12282 (1981)
26685)
12276
Iran (hostage taking—
Establishes escrow
Ratified by E.O. 12294
(Jan. 19, 1981; 46 FR
resolution)
accounts
(1981)
7913)
12277
Iran (hostage taking—
Transfers Iran
Ratified by E.O. 12294
(Jan, 19, 1981; 46 FR
resolution)
government funds
(1981)
7915)
12278
Iran (hostage taking—
Transfers Iran
Ratified by E.O. 12294
(Jan. 19, 1981; 46 FR
resolution)
government assets
(1981)
7917)
overseas
12279
Iran (hostage taking—
Transfers Iran
Ratified by E.O. 12294
(Jan. 19, 1981; 46 FR
resolution)
government assets held in
(1981)
7917)
U.S. banks
12280
Iran (hostage taking—
Transfers Iran
Ratified by E.O. 12294
(Jan. 19, 1981; 46 FR
resolution)
government financial
(1981)
7921)
assets held by non-banks
12281
Iran (hostage taking—
Transfers other Iran
Ratified by E.O. 12294
(Jan. 19, 1981; 46 FR
resolution)
government assets
(1981)
7923)
12282
Iran (hostage taking—
Revokes prohibitions
Ratified by E.O. 12294
(Jan. 19, 1981; 46 FR
resolution)
against transactions
(1981)
7925)
involving Iran
12283
Iran (hostage taking—
Non-prosecution of
Ratified by E.O. 12294
(Jan. 19, 1981; 46 FR
resolution)
claims of Iran hostages
(1981)
7927)
12284
Iran (hostage taking—
Restricts transfer of
Ratified by E.O. 12294
(Jan. 19, 1981; 46 FR
resolution)
property of the Shah
(1981)
7929)
12285
Iran (hostage taking--
Establishes Commission
Revoked by E.O. 12379
(Jan. 19, 1981; 46 FR
resolution
on Hostage
(1982)
7931)
Compensation
Administration of President Ronald Reagan (1981-1989)
12294
Iran (hostage taking—
Suspends claims and
Amended by E.O. 12379
(Feb. 24, 1981; 46 FR
resolution)
litigation against Iran
(1982)
14111)
Congressional Research Service
52

The International Emergency Economic Powers Act: Origins, Evolution, and Use

Country or Issue of
Executive Order
Concern
Sanction/Remedy
Current Status
12444
Expiration of Export
Continues Export
Revoked by E.O. 12451
(Oct. 14, 1983; 48 FR
Administration Act of
Administration
(1983) (EAA
48215)
1979 (EAA)
Regulations (EAR)
reauthorized)
12470
Expiration of EAA
Continues EAR
Revoked by E.O. 12525
(Mar. 30, 1984; 49 FR
(1985) (EAA
13099)
reauthorized)
12513
Nicaragua (civil war)
Declares national
Revoked by E.O. 12707
(May 1, 1985; 50 FR
emergency; prohibits
(1990)
18629)
imports, exports, air
traffic, use of U.S. ports
12532
South Africa (apartheid,
Declares national
Revoked by E.O. 12769
(Sept. 9, 1985; 50 FR
to meet requirements of
emergency; prohibits
(1991)
36861)
U.N. Security Council
loans to government,
(UNSC) Resolution)
crime control exports,
nuclear-related exports,
military-related imports;
supports Sul ivan
Principles
12535
South Africa (apartheid,
Prohibits import of
Revoked by E.O. 12769
(Oct. 1, 1985; 50 FR
to meet requirements of
krugerrands
(1991)
40325)
UNSC Resolution)
12543
Libya (terrorism, regional
Declares national
Revoked by E.O. 13357
(Jan. 1, 1986; 51FR875)
unrest)
emergency; prohibits
(2004)
most imports and
exports, transactions
relating to transportation
to/from Libya,
performance of contract
obligations in support of
Libyan projects, bank
loans, financial
transactions related to
travel to Libya
12544
Libya (terrorism, regional
Blocks Libyan
Revoked by E.O. 13357
(Jan. 8, 1986; 51 FR 1235)
unrest)
Government assets in
(2004)
United States
12635
Panama (finding
Declares national
Revoked by E.O. 12710
(Apr. 8, 1988; 53 FR
government of Noriega
emergency; blocks
(1990)
12134)
and Palma a threat)
Panama assets in United
States
Administration of President George H.W. Bush (1989-1993)
12722
Iraq (invasion of Kuwait;
Declares national
Revoked by E.O. 13350
(Aug. 2, 1990; 55 FR
to meet requirements of
emergency; blocks Iraq
(2004)
31803)
UNSC Resolution)
Government assets in
U.S.; prohibits most
export and import;
restricts transactions
related to travel; prohibits
loans
Congressional Research Service
53

The International Emergency Economic Powers Act: Origins, Evolution, and Use

Country or Issue of
Executive Order
Concern
Sanction/Remedy
Current Status
12723
Kuwait (after Iraq’s
Declares national
Revoked by E.O. 12725
(Aug. 2, 1990; 55 FR
invasion; to meet
emergency; blocks Kuwait (1990)
31805)
requirements of UNSC
Government assets in
Resolution)
U.S.
12724
Iraq (invasion of Kuwait;
Blocks Iraq Government
Revoked by E.O. 13350
(Aug. 9, 1990; 55 FR
to meet requirements of
assets in U.S.; prohibits
(2004)
33089)
UNSC Resolution)
most export and import;
restricts transactions
related to travel; prohibits
loans
12725
Kuwait (after Iraq’s
Blocks Kuwait
Revoked by E.O. 12771
(Aug. 9, 1990; 55 FR
invasion, to meet
Government assets in
(1991)
33091)
requirements of UNSC
U.S.; prohibits most
Resolution)
export and import;
restricts transactions
related to travel; prohibits
loans
12730
Expiration of EAA
Continues EAR
Revoked by E.O. 12867
(Sept. 30, 1990; 55 FR
(1993)
40373)
12735
Chemical and biological
Declares national
Revoked and replaced by
(Nov. 16, 1990; 55 FR
weapons proliferation
emergency; prohibits
E.O. 12938 (1994)
48587)
transactions
12775
Haiti (military coup)
Declares national
Revoked by E.O. 12932
(Oct. 4, 1991; 56 FR
emergency; blocks Haiti
(1994)
50641)
Government assets in
U.S.; prohibits
transactions
12779
Haiti (military coup)
Blocks Haiti Government
Revoked by E.O. 12932
(Oct. 28, 1991; 56 FR
assets in U.S.; prohibits
(1994)
55975)
export and import,
transactions
12801
Libya (to meet
Bars overflight, takeoff
Revoked by E.O. 13357
(Apr. 15, 1992; 57 FR
requirements of UNSC
and landing planes
(2004)
14319)
Resolution)
traveling to/from Libya
12808
Yugoslavia (Serbia and
Declares national
Revoked by E.O. 13304
(May 30, 1992; 57 FR
Montenegro) (regional
emergency; blocks
(2003)
23299)
conflict; to meet
Yugoslav Government
requirements of UNSC
assets in United States

Resolution)
12810
Yugoslavia (Serbia and
Blocks Yugoslav
Revoked by E.O. 13304
(June 5, 1992; 57 FR
Montenegro) (regional
Government assets in
(2003)
24347)
conflict; to meet
U.S.; prohibits import and
requirements of UNSC
export, transactions
Resolution)
related to travel, air
traffic, loans, completing
contracts, sports
participation, tech/cultural
exchanges
Congressional Research Service
54

The International Emergency Economic Powers Act: Origins, Evolution, and Use

Country or Issue of
Executive Order
Concern
Sanction/Remedy
Current Status
12817
Iraq (postwar; to meet
Blocks assets
Revoked by E.O. 13350
Oct. 21, 1992; 57 FR
requirements of UNSC
(2004)
48433)
Resolution)
12831
Yugoslavia (Serbia and
Prohibits transshipment
Revoked by E.O. 13304
(Jan. 15, 1993; 58 FR
Montenegro) (regional
(2003)
5253)
conflict)

Administration of President William Clinton (1993-2001)
12846
Yugoslavia (Serbia and
Tightens sanctions,
Revoked by E.O. 13304
(Apr. 25, 1993; 58 FR
Montenegro) (regional
especial y those relating
(2003)
25771)
conflict; to meet
to maritime restrictions
requirements of UNSC
Resolution)
12853
Haiti (military coup)
Blocks assets of regime;
Revoked by E.O. 12932
(June 30, 1993; 58 FR
prohibits export of
(1994)
35843)
petroleum, arms, and
related materiel
12865
UNITA (Angola) (to meet
Declares national
Revoked by E.O. 13298
(Sept. 26, 1993; 58 FR
requirements of UNSC
emergency; prohibits sales (2003)
51005)
Resolution)
to UNITA and UNITA-
control ed regions
12868
Weapons proliferation
Declares national
Revoked and replaced by
(Sept. 30, 1993; 58 FR
emergency; controls
E.O. 12930 (1994)
51749)
exports; prohibits
transactions with those
found not in compliance
with controls
12872
Haiti (military coup)
Blocks assets of those
Revoked by E.O. 12932
(Oct. 18, 1993; 58 FR
impeding democratization
(1994)
54029)
process
12914
Haiti (military coup)
Blocks assets of military
Revoked by E.O. 12932
(May 7, 1994; 59 FR
and participants in 1991
(1994)
24339)
overthrow; prohibits air
traffic
12917
Haiti (military coup)
Prohibits imports
Revoked by E.O. 12932
(May 21, 1994; 59 FR
(1994)
26925)
12920
Haiti (military coup)
Prohibits certain financial
Revoked by E.O. 12932
(June 10, 1994; 59 FR
transactions, exports
(1994)
30501)
12922
Haiti (military coup)
Blocks assets of certain
Revoked by E.O. 12932
(June 21, 1994; 59 FR
individuals
(1994)
32645)
12923
Expiration of EAA
Continues EAR
Revoked and replaced by
(June 30, 1994; 59 FR
E.O. 12924 (1994)
34551)
Congressional Research Service
55

The International Emergency Economic Powers Act: Origins, Evolution, and Use

Country or Issue of
Executive Order
Concern
Sanction/Remedy
Current Status
12924
Expiration of EAA
Continues EAR
Amended by E.O. 12981
(August 19, 1994; 59 FR
(1995)
34551)
12930
Proliferation of weapons
Declares national
Revoked and replaced by
(Sept. 29, 1994; 59 FR
of mass destruction
emergency; controls
E.O. 12938 (1994)
50475)
exports; prohibits
transactions with those
found not in compliance
with controls
12934
Bosnian Serb-control ed
Blocks assets; prohibits
Revoked by E.O. 13304
(Oct. 25, 1994; 59 FR
areas of Bosnia and
export, maritime access
(2003)
54117)
Herzegovina (to meet
to certain ports
requirements of UNSC
resolution)
12938
Proliferation of weapons
Declares national
Amended by E.O. 13099
(Nov. 19, 1994; 59 FR
of mass destruction
emergency; controls
(1998)
59099)
exports; prohibits
transactions with those
found not in compliance
with controls
12947
Terrorists who disrupt
Declares national
Renewed annually
(Jan. 23, 1995; 60 FR
Middle East peace process emergency; blocks assets;
5079)
prohibits transactions
12957
Iran (weapons
Declares national
Revoked in part, and
(Mar. 15, 1995; 60 FR
proliferation)
emergency; prohibits
restated in E.O. 12959
14615)
investment in oil
(1995)
development
12959
Iran (weapons
Prohibits investment in oil Revoked in part by E.O.
(May 6, 1995; 60 FR
proliferation)
development
13059 (1997)
24757)
12978
Significant narcotics
Declares national
Renewed annually
(Oct. 21, 1995; 60 FR
traffickers (initially
emergency; blocks assets;
54579)
Colombia)
prohibits transactions
12981
EAA
Amends the
Amended by E.O. 13020
(Dec. 5, 1995)
administration of export
(1996)
controls.
13020
EAA
Further amends the
Amended by E.O. 13026
(Oct. 12, 1996)
administration of export
(1996)
controls.
13026
EAA
Further amends the
Revoked by E.O. 13206
(Nov. 15, 1996)
administration of export
(2001)
controls. Adds rules for
encryption products.
13047
Burma (military
Declares national
Revoked by E.O. 13742
(May 22, 1997; 62 FR
government; to
emergency; blocks new
(2016)
28301)
implement Sec. 570 of P.L. investment
104-208)
Congressional Research Service
56

The International Emergency Economic Powers Act: Origins, Evolution, and Use

Country or Issue of
Executive Order
Concern
Sanction/Remedy
Current Status
13059
Iran (weapons
Blocks imports, exports
Amended by E.O. 13716
(Aug. 19, 1997; 62 FR
proliferation, terrorism,
(2016)
44531)
regional stability)
13067
Sudan (conflict)
Declares national
Revoked in part by E.O.
(Nov. 3, 1997; 62 FR
emergency; blocks Sudan
13761 (2017)
59989)
Government assets;
prohibits exports,
imports, other
transactions
13069 (Dec. 12, 1997; 62
UNITA (Angola) (war)
Prohibits certain
Revoked by E.O. 13298
FR 65989)
transaction
(2003)
13088
Yugoslavia (Serbia and
Declares national
Revoked by E.O. 13304
(June 9, 1998; 63 FR
Montenegro) (war)
emergency; blocks
(2003)
32109)
Yugoslav Government
assets; prohibits
transactions
13094
Proliferation of weapons
Prohibits some
Amended by E.O. 13128
(July 28, 1998; 63 FR
of mass destruction
transactions, assistance,
(1999)
40803)
imports
13098
UNITA (Angola) (war; to
Blocks UNITA assets in
Revoked by E.O. 13298
(Aug. 18, 1998; 63 FR
meet requirements of
U.S.; prohibits imports
(2003)
44771)
UNSC resolution)
from and exports to
UNITA-control ed or
influences industries
13099
Terrorists who disrupt
Adds Usama bin Laden
Amends E.O. 12947
(Aug. 20, 1998; 63 FR
the Middle East peace
and others to the
(1995); see above
45167)
process
terrorist list
13121
Yugoslavia (Serbia and
Blocks Yugoslav
Revoked by E.O. 13304
(Apr. 30, 1999; 64 FR
Montenegro) (war)
Government assets;
(2003)
24021)
prohibits transactions
13128
Proliferation of weapons
Implements the Chemical
Renewed Annually.
(Jun. 25, 1999)
of mass destruction
Weapons Convention and
the Chemical Weapons
Convention
Implementation Act.
13129
Taliban (terrorism)
Declares national
National emergency
(July 4, 1999; 64 FR
emergency; blocks
terminated by E.O. 13268
36759)
property
(2002); see, however,
E.O. 13224 (2001)
E.O. 13159
Russia for misuse of highly Declares national
Superseded by E.O.
(June 21, 2000; 65 FR
enriched uranium
emergency; blocks
13617 (2012)
39279)
extractions
property
13192
Yugoslavia (Serbia and
Substantially expands
Revoked by E.O. 13304
(Jan. 17, 2001; 66 FR
Montenegro) (war)
sanctions in E.O. 13088
(2003)
7379)
(1998) to apply to
humanitarian crisis in
Kosovo
Congressional Research Service
57

The International Emergency Economic Powers Act: Origins, Evolution, and Use

Country or Issue of
Executive Order
Concern
Sanction/Remedy
Current Status
13194
Sierra Leone (diamond
Declares national
Revoked by E.O. 13324
(Jan. 18, 2001; 66 FR
trade)
emergency; prohibits
2004)
7389)
diamond imports
Administration of President George W. Bush (2001-2009)
13213
Sierra Leone (diamond
Expands prohibitions on
Revoked by E.O. 13324
(May 22, 2001; 66 FR
trade)
diamond trade
2004)
28829)
13219
Western Balkans
Declares national
Renewed annually
(June 26, 2001; 66 FR
(destabilization postwar)
emergency; blocks
34775)
property
13222
Expiration of EAA
Continues EAR
Renewed annually
(Aug. 17, 2001; 66 FR
44025)
13224
Terrorism
Declares national
Renewed annually
(Sept. 23, 2001; 66 FR
emergency; blocks
49079
property; prohibits
transactions
13268
Taliban and Terrorism
Terminates E.O. 13129
Expanded by E.O. 13371
(July 2, 2002; 67 FR
(1999); amends E.O.
(2005)
44751)
13224 (2001)
13288
Zimbabwe (undermining
Declares national
Renewed annually,
(Mar. 6, 2003; 68 FR
democratic processes)
emergency; blocks
superseded in part by
11457)
property
E.O. 13391 (2005)
13290
Iraq (war)
Authorizes the
Modified by E.O. 13350
Mar. 20, 2003; 68 FR
confiscation and vesting of (2004)
14307)
property
13298
UNITA (Angola)
Terminates earlier
Revokes earlier orders
(May 6, 2003; 68 FR
emergency
24857)
13303
Iraq (war)
Declares national
Amends earlier order
(May 22, 2003; 68 FR
emergency; Protects
31931)
certain property, revokes
earlier orders.
13304
Yugoslavia (regional war)
Terminates earlier
Revokes and modifies
(May 28, 2003; 68 FR
emergency
earlier orders
32315)
13310
Burma (military
Blocks property
Revoked by E.O. 13742
(July 28, 2003; 68 FR
government)
(2016)
44853)
13312
Sierra Leone and Liberia
Implements the Clean
Revoked by E.O. 13324
(Jul. 3, 2003)
(conflict)
Diamond Trade Act
(2004)
13315
Iraq (former regime)
Blocks property
Superseded by E.O.
(Aug. 28, 2003; 68 FR
13350 (2004)
52315)
Congressional Research Service
58

The International Emergency Economic Powers Act: Origins, Evolution, and Use

Country or Issue of
Executive Order
Concern
Sanction/Remedy
Current Status
13324
Sierra Leone and Liberia
Terminates earlier
Revokes earlier order
(Jan. 15, 2004)
(conflict)
emergency
13338
Syria (civil conflict)
Declares national
Modified by E.O. 13460
(May 11, 2004; 69 FR
emergency; blocks
(2008); renewed annually
26751)
property of those who
export certain goods to
Syria
13348
Liberia (corruption, to
Declares national
Revoked by E.O. 13710
(July 22, 2004; 69 FR
meet requirements of
emergency; blocks
(2015)
44885)
UNSC resolution)
property; prohibits
imports
13350
Iraq (postwar)
Ends emergency from
Amended by E.O. 13364
(July 29, 2004; 69 FR
1990 Kuwait invasion
(2004)
46055)
13357
Libya (terrorism)
Terminates earlier
Revokes earlier orders
(Sept. 20, 2004; 69 FR
emergency
56665)
13364
Iraq (postwar)
Amends transaction
Amended by E.O. 13668
(Nov. 29, 2004)
controls and regulations
(2014)
on the Development fund
for Iraq
13372
Terrorism
Clarifies use of sanctions
Amends E.O. 12947, E.O.
(Feb. 16, 2005; 70 FR
13224
8499)
13382
Weapons proliferation
Expands on earlier
Amends E.O. 12938
(June 28, 2005; 70 FR
orders; blocks property
(1994) and 13094 (1998),
38567)
see above
13391
Zimbabwe (undermining
Blocks property
Amends and supersedes,
(Nov. 22, 2005; 70 FR
democratic processes)
in part, E.O. 13288 (2003)
71201)
13396
Cote d’Ivoire (conflict)
Declares national
Revoked by E.O. 13739
(Feb. 7, 2006; 71 FR
emergency; blocks
(2016)
7389)
property
13399
Syria (civil war)
Expands E.O. 13338
Amends earlier order
(Apr. 25, 2006; 71 FR
(2004); blocks property
25059)
13400
Sudan (Darfur)
Expands E.O. 13067
Amends earlier order
(Apr. 26, 2006; 71 FR
(1997); blocks property
25483)
13405
Belarus (undermining
Declares national
Renewed annually
(June 16, 2006; 71 FR
democracy)
emergency; blocks
35485)
property
13412
Sudan (Darfur, regional
Expands E.O. 13067
Revoked by E.O. 13761
(Oct. 13, 2006; 71 FR
stability)
(1997; blocks property
(2017)
61369)
and transactions
Congressional Research Service
59

The International Emergency Economic Powers Act: Origins, Evolution, and Use

Country or Issue of
Executive Order
Concern
Sanction/Remedy
Current Status
13413
Democratic Republic of
Declares national
Renewed annually;
(Oct. 27, 2006; 71 FR
the Congo (regional
emergency; blocks
amended by E.O. 13671
64105)
stability)
property
(2014)
13438
Those who threaten
Expands E.O. 13303
Expands other orders
(July 17, 2007; 72 FR
stabilization efforts in Iraq
(2003); blocks property
39719)
13441
Those who threaten the
Declares national
Renewed annually
(Aug. 1, 2007; 72 FR
sovereignty of Lebanon
emergency; blocks
43499)
(primarily Syria)
property
13448
Burma (military
Declares national
Revoked by E.O. 13742
Oct. 18, 2007; 72 FR
government)
emergency; blocks
(2016)
60223)
property and transactions
13460
Syria (civil conflict)
Blocks property of those
Amends E.O. 13338
(Feb. 13, 2008; 73 FR
who support certain
(2004)
8991)
activities in Syria
13464
Burma (military
Blocks property and
Revoked by E.O. 13742
Apr. 30, 2008; 72 FR
government)
transactions
(2016)
24491)
13466
North Korea (weapons
Declares national
Renewed annually
(June 26, 2008; 73 FR
proliferation, to meet
emergency; blocks
36787)
requirements of UNSC
property and transactions
resolution)
13469
Zimbabwe (undermining
Blocks property
Expands E.O. 13288
(July 25, 2008; 73 FR
democracy)
(2003) and 13391 (2005)
43841)
Administration of President Barack Obama (2009-2017)
13536
Somalia (conflict)
Declares national
Amended by E.O. 13620
(Apr. 12, 2010; 75 FR
emergency; blocks
(2012); renewed annually
19869)
property
13551
North Korea (weapons
Declares national
Renewed annually
(Aug. 30, 2010; 75 FR
proliferation, to meet
emergency; Blocks
53837)
requirements of UNSC
property
resolution)
13553
Iran (human rights)
Blocks property including
Expands E.O. 12957
(Sept, 28, 2010; 75 FR
that of Iranian officials
(1995)
60567)
13566
Libya (stability)
Declares national
Modified by E.O. 13726
(Feb. 25, 2011; 76 FR
emergency; blocks
(2016); renewed annually
11315)
property and transactions
13570
North Korea (weapons
Blocks transactions
Expands E.O. 13466
(Apr. 18, 2011; 76 FR
proliferation, to meet
(2008), 13551 (2010);
22291)
requirements of UNSC
amended by E.O. 13687
resolution)
(2015)
13572
Syria (human rights)
Blocks property of human Expands E.O. 13338
(Apr. 29, 2011; 76 FR
rights violators
(2004), 13399 (2006), and
24787)
13460 (2008)
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Country or Issue of
Executive Order
Concern
Sanction/Remedy
Current Status
13573
Syria (war)
Blocks property of senior
Expands E.O. 13338
(May 18, 2011; 76 FR
government officials
(2004), 13399 (2006),
29143)
13460 (2008), and 13572
(2011); amended by E.O.
13582 (2011)
13574
Iran (weapons
Implements new sanctions Revoked by E.O. 13716
(May 23, 2011; 76 FR
proliferation)
in Iran Sanctions Act of
(2016)
30505)
1996
13581
Transnational Criminal
Declares national
Renewed annually
(July 24, 2011; 76 FR
Organizations
emergency; blocks
44757)
property
13582
Syria (war)
Blocks property of
Expands E.O. 13338
(Aug. 17, 2011; 76 FR
Government of Syria and
(2004), 13399 (2006),
52209)
transactions
13460 (2008), 13572
(2011), and E.O. 13573
(2011)
13590
Iran (weapons
Prohibits transactions
Revoked by E.O. 13716
(Nov. 20, 2011; 76 FR
proliferation)
related to Iran’s energy
(2016)
72609)
and petrochemical sectors
13599
Iran (weapons
Blocks property of
Expands E.O. 12957
(Feb. 5, 2012; 77 FR
proliferation)
government and financial
(1995)
6659)
institutions
13606
Iran and Syria (human
Blocks property and
Expands E.O. 12957
(Apr. 22, 2012; 77 FR
rights)
denies visas
(1995) and 13338 (2004)
24571)
13608
Iran and Syria (sanctions
Blocks transactions and
Expands E.O. 12938
(May 1, 2012; 77 FR
evasion)
denies visas
(1994), 12957 (1995),
26409)
13224 (2001), and 13338
(2004)
13611
Yemen (stability)
Declares national
Renewed annually
(May 16, 2012; 77 FR
emergency; blocks
29533)
property
13617
Russia (misuse of highly
Blocks property
Revoked by E.O. 13695
(June 25, 2012; 77 FR
enriched uranium
(2015)
38459)
extractions
13619
Burma (military
Blocks property
Revoked by E.O. 13742
(July 11, 2012; 77 FR
government)
(2016)
41243)
13620
Somalia (conflict)
Expands targets to include Amends E.O. 13536
July 20, 2012; 77 FR
misappropriations,
(2010)
43483)
corruption, impeding
humanitarian aid
13622
Iran (weapons
Additional sanctions
Revoked by E.O. 13716
(July 30, 2012; 77 FR
proliferation)
(Jan. 16, 2016; 81 FR
45897)
3693)
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Country or Issue of
Executive Order
Concern
Sanction/Remedy
Current Status
13628
Iran (weapons
Implements Iran Threat
Amended by E.O. 13716
(Oct. 9, 2012; 77 FR
proliferation, human
Reduction Act
(2016)
62139)
rights, sanctions evasion)
13637
EAA
Amends EAR
Renewed annually
(Mar. 8, 2013)
13645
Iran (weapons
Implements Iran Freedom
Revoked by E.O. 13716
(June 3, 2013; 78 FR
proliferation, human
and Counter-Proliferation
(Jan. 16, 2016; 81 FR
33945)
rights)
Act of 2012
3693)
13651
Burma
Prohibits import of jadeite Expands E.O. 13047
(Aug. 6, 2013; 78 FR
and rubies
(1997) and subsequent
48793)
orders
13660
Ukraine (stability)
Declares national
Renewed annually
(Mar. 6, 2014; 79 FR
emergency; blocks
13493)
property
13661
Russia (destabilization of
Blocks property
Expands E.O. 13660
(Mar. 16, 2014; 79 FR
Ukraine)
(2014)
15535)
13662
Russia (destabilization of
Blocks property
Expands E.O. 13660
(Mar. 20, 2014; 79 FR
Ukraine)
(2014)
16169)
13664
South Sudan (conflict)
Declares national
Renewed annually
(Apr. 3, 2014; 79 FR
emergency; blocks
19283)
property
13667
Central African Republic
Declares national
Renewed annually
(May 12, 2014; 79 FR
(conflict)
emergency; blocks
28387)
property
13668
Iraq (postwar)
Ends immunities granted
Renewed annually
(May 27, 2014)
to the Development Fund
for Iraq
13671
Democratic Republic of
Additional sanctions
Expands E.O. 13413
(July 8, 2014; 79 FR
the Congo (regional
(2006)
39949)
stability)
13685
Ukraine (destabilizing
Blocks property and
Expands E.O. 13660
(Dec. 19, 2014; 79 FR
activities in Crimea)
transactions
(2014)
77357)
13687
North Korea (weapons
Additional sanctions
Expands E.O. 13466
(Jan. 2, 2015; 80 FR 819)
proliferation, to meet
(2008), 13551 (2010),
requirements of UNSC
13570 (2011)
resolution)
13692
Venezuela (corruption,
Declares national
Renewed annually
(Mar. 8, 2015; 80 FR
stability)
emergency; blocks
12747)
property and deny visas
13694
Malicious Cyber-Enabled
Declares national
Renewed annually
(Apr. 1, 2015; 80 FR
Activities
emergency; blocks
18077)
property
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Country or Issue of
Executive Order
Concern
Sanction/Remedy
Current Status
13695
Russia’s misuse of highly
Terminates emergency
Revokes E.O. 13617
(May 26, 2015; 80 FR
enriched uranium
(2012)
30331)
extractions
13710
Liberia (corrupt
Terminates emergency
Revokes E.O. 13348
(Nov. 12, 2015; 80 FR
government)
(2004)
71679)
13712
Burundi (stability)
Declares national
Renewed annually
(Nov. 22, 2015; 80 FR
emergency; blocks
73633)
property
13716
Iran (nuclear weapons)
Implements U.S.
Revokes and modifies
(Jan. 16, 2016; 81 FR
obligations under the Joint earlier orders
3693)
Comprehensive Plan of
Action
13722
North Korea (weapons
Blocks property of North
Expands E.O. 13466
(Mar. 15, 2016; 81 FR
proliferation, to meet
Korea government and
(2008)
14943)
requirements of UNSC
central party; prohibits
resolution)
transactions
13726
Libya (stability)
Additional sanctions
Expands E.O. 13566
(Apr. 19, 2016; 81 FR
(2011)
23559)
13739
Cote d’Ivoire (conflict)
Terminates emergency
Revokes E.O. 13396
(Sept, 14, 2016; 81 FR
(2006)
63673)
13742
Burma
Terminates emergency
Revokes E.O. 13047
(Oct. 7, 2016; 81 FR
(1997), 13310 (2003),
70593)
13448 (2007), 13464
(2008), 13619 (2012)
13757
Malicious Cyber-Enabled
Additional sanctions
Modifies E.O. 13694
(Dec. 28, 2016)
Activities
(2015)
13761
Sudan (war, human rights) Recognizes “positive
Revokes in part E.O.
(Jan. 13, 2017; 82 FR
actions” by the
13067 (1997), in whole
5331)
Government of Sudan by
E.O. 13412 (2006)
removing some sanctions
Administration of President Donald J. Trump (2017-)
13804
Sudan (war, human rights) Extends deadlines in E.O.
Modifies E.O. 13761
(July 11, 2017; 82 FR
13761
(2017)
32611)
13808
Venezuela (human rights,
Additional sanctions
Expands actions based on
(Aug. 24, 2017; 82 FR
democracy, corruption)
national emergency
41155)
declared in E.O. 13692
(2015)
13810
North Korea (weapons
Additional sanctions
Expands actions based on
(Sept, 20, 2017; 82 FR
proliferation, human
national emergency
44705)
rights)
declared in E.O. 13466
(2008)
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The International Emergency Economic Powers Act: Origins, Evolution, and Use

Country or Issue of
Executive Order
Concern
Sanction/Remedy
Current Status
13818
Global Magnitsky (human
Declares national
Likely to be renewed
(Dec. 20, 2017; 82 FR
rights, corruption)
emergency; blocks
annually (pending first
60839)
property
anniversary)
13827
Venezuela (sanctions
Prohibits transactions,
Expands actions based on
(Mar. 19, 2018; 83 FR
evasion)
financing, trade in digital
national emergency
12469)
currency issued by or on
declared in E.O. 13692
behalf of the Government
(2015)
of Venezuela
13835
Venezuela (economic
Prohibits U.S. persons
Expands actions based on
(May 21, 2018; 83 FR
mismanagement, public
from purchasing debt
national emergency
24001)
corruption, undermining
owed the Government of
declared in E.O. 13692
democratic order,
Venezuela or trading in
(2015)
humanitarian and public
equity in which the
health crisis)
Government holds at
least a 50% stake
13846
Iran
Reimposes sanctions lifted Expands actions based on
(Aug. 6, 2018; 83 FR
for U.S. meeting its
national emergency
38939)
obligations under the Joint declared in E.O. 12957
Comprehensive Plan of
(1995)
Action of July 14, 2015
(JCPOA)
13848
Foreign interference in
Declares national
Complements actions
(Sept. 12, 2018; 83 FR
U.S. elections
emergency relating to
taken under E.O. 13694,
46843)

election interference.
as amended.
Establishes framework to
assess possible
interference by foreign
persons or governments
in any U.S. election.
Blocks property and
interests in property of
those designated for being
complicit in interfering in
an election.
13849
Implements Russia-related Limits U.S. bank loans,
Expands actions based on
(Sept. 21, 2018; 83 FR
sanctions adopted in the
prohibits foreign
national emergencies
48195)
Countering Russian
exchange, blocks
declared in E.O. 13660
Influence in Europe and
property, prohibits
(2014) and related EO,

Eurasia Act of 2017 (Title
Export-Import Bank
and E.O. 13694 (2015), as
II, P.L. 115-44; 22 U.S.C. §
programs, limits the
amended.
9501 et seq.)
issuing of specific licenses,
requires “no” votes in the
international financial
institutions where a loan
would benefit a person
otherwise subject to
sanctions, limits access to
the U.S. banking system,
prohibits procurement
contracts with the USG,
denies entry into the
United States.
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The International Emergency Economic Powers Act: Origins, Evolution, and Use

Country or Issue of
Executive Order
Concern
Sanction/Remedy
Current Status
13851
Nicaragua
Blocks property of certain
(Nov. 27, 2018; 83 FR
persons contributing to
61505)
the situation in Nicaragua.
13857
Venezuela
Taking additional steps to
Expands actions based on
(Jan. 25, 2019; 84 FR 509)
address the national
national emergency
emergency with respect
declared in E.O. 13692
to Venezuela; redefines
(2015); modifies EOs
“the government of
13692, 13808, 13827,
Venezuela”
13850
13871
Iran
Prohibits transactions
Expands actions based on
(May 8, 2019; 84 FR
related to Iran’s iron,
national emergency
20761)
steel, aluminum, or
declared in Exec. Order
copper sectors.
12957 (1995)
13873
The Information and
Declares national
Likely to be renewed
(May 15, 2019, 84 FR
Communications
emergency. Prohibits
annually (pending first
22689)
Technology and Services
unduly risky transactions
anniversary)
Supply Chain
involving information and
communications
technology or services
designed, developed,
manufactured, or
supplied, by foreign
adversaries.
13876
Iran
Prohibits transactions
Expands actions based on
(June 24, 2019; 84 FR
related to U.S.-based
national emergency
30573)
assets of the Supreme
declared in Exec. Order
Leader of the Islamic
12957 (1995)
Republic of Iran, Supreme
Leader’s Office (SLO),
and anyone appointed to
a state position in Iran.
13882
Mali
Declares national
Likely to be renewed
(July 26, 2019; 84 FR
emergency relating to
annually (pending first
37055)
terrorism, narcotics
anniversary)
trafficking, trafficking in
persons, human rights
abuses, hostage-taking,
and attacks against
civilians and international
security forces in Mali; no
designations made at time
of issuance.
13883
Chemical and biological
Requires the U.S. to
Expands actions based on
(August 1, 2019; 84 F.R.
weapons proliferation or
oppose international
E.O. 12938 (1994);
38113)
use; currently could be
financial institutions’
implements sanctions
used against Syria, North
programs to the targeted
requirements of Sec. 307,
Korea, and Russia, based
state; prohibits U.S. banks
P.L. 102-182; and amends
on determinations made
from providing loans or
Exec. Order 12851 (1993)
under sec. 307 of P.L.
credits to the targeted
to include CBW-related
102-182 (22 U.S.C. 5605) government.
determinations
13884
Venezuela
Blocks property of the
Expands actions based on
(August 5, 2019; 84 F.R.
government of Venezuela
E.O. 13692 (2015)
38843)
in the United States
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The International Emergency Economic Powers Act: Origins, Evolution, and Use

Country or Issue of
Executive Order
Concern
Sanction/Remedy
Current Status
13886 (September 9,
Terrorism
Consolidates and
Revokes E.O. 12947
2019; 84 F.R. 48041)
enhances “sanctions to
(1995); amends E.O.
combat acts of terrorism
13224 (2001)
and threats of terrorism
by foreign terrorists”
13894 (October 14, 2019; Turkey’s incursion into
Declares a national
Current
84 F.R. 55851)
Syria
emergency relating to
Turkey’s military invasion
of northeast Syria; blocks
property and suspends
entry into the United
States of “certain persons
contributing to the
situation in Syria”
13902 (January 10, 2020;
Iran
Blocks property and
Expands actions based on
85 F.R. 2003)
prohibits transactions
E.O. 12957 (1995)
related to Iran’s
construction, mining,
manufacturing, or textiles
sectors, or any other
sector to be determined
by the Secretary of the
Treasury
13920 (May 1, 2020; 85
United States Bulk-Power
Declares a national
Current
F.R. 26595
System
emergency relating to
bulk-power system
equipment.
13928 (June 11, 2020; 85
International Criminal
Declares national
Current
F.R. 36139)
Court (ICC)
emergency related to the
ICC’s intention to
“investigate, arrest,
detain, or prosecute any
United States personnel
without the consent of
the United States”; blocks
property and entry into
the United States of any
person found to be
engaged in or facilitating
ICC investigations.




Source: CRS, based on National Archives: Executive Orders Disposition Tables; The American Presidency
Project, University of California, Santa Barbara; and Federal Register, various dates.

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The International Emergency Economic Powers Act: Origins, Evolution, and Use


Author Information

Christopher A. Casey, Coordinator
Dianne E. Rennack
Analyst in International Trade and Finance
Specialist in Foreign Policy Legislation


Ian F. Fergusson
Jennifer K. Elsea
Specialist in International Trade and Finance
Legislative Attorney




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