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A sanction may be either a permission or a restriction, depending upon context, as the word is an auto-antonym.
Examples of sanctions include:
- economic sanctions, typically a ban on trade, possibly limited to certain sectors (such as armaments), or with certain exceptions (such as food and medicine) like sanctions against Iran
- international sanctions, coercive measures adopted by a country or a group of countries against another state or individual(s) in order to elicit a change in their behavior
- pragmatic sanction, historically, a sovereign's solemn decree which addresses a matter of primary importance and which has the force of fundamental law
In other uses:
- sanctions (law), penalties imposed by courts
- sanctions, mechanisms of social control
- sanctioned name, a special name in mycology
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