sanction Meaning in the Cambridge English Dictionary
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Meaning of “sanction” in the English Dictionary

"sanction" in British English

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sanctionnoun

uk   us   /ˈsæŋk.ʃən/

sanction noun (ORDER)

[C usually plural] an ​officialorder, such as the ​stopping of ​trade, that is taken against a ​country in ​order to make it ​obeyinternationallaw: Many ​nations have imposed sanctions on the ​country because of ​itsattacks on ​its own ​people. Trade/​economic sanctions will only be lifted (= ​stopped) when the ​aggressornationwithdrawsitstroops.C2 [C] a ​strongaction taken in ​order to make ​peopleobey a ​law or ​rule, or a ​punishment given when they do not ​obey: Without ​realistic sanctions, some ​teachers have ​difficultykeepingorder in the ​classroom.
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sanction noun (APPROVAL)

[U] approval or ​permission, ​especiallyformal or ​legal: They ​tried to get official sanction for the ​plans.

sanctionverb [T]

uk   us   /ˈsæŋk.ʃən/
to ​formally give ​permission for something: The ​government was ​reluctant to sanction ​intervention in the ​crisis.
(Definition of sanction from the Cambridge Advanced Learner’s Dictionary & Thesaurus © Cambridge University Press)

"sanction" in American English

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sanctionnoun

 us   /ˈsæŋk·ʃən/

sanction noun (APPROVAL)

[U] fml approval or ​permission: To be just, a ​government must have the sanction of the ​governed. Note: usually describes formal or legal approval

sanction noun (PUNISHMENT)

[C usually pl] an ​officialaction taken against a ​government to ​force it to ​behave in a ​particular way or as ​punishment for not doing so: trade/​economic sanctions

sanctionverb [T]

 us   /ˈsæŋk·ʃən/

sanction verb [T] (PERMIT)

to ​formallypermit something: The UN sanctioned ​intervention in the ​crisis.
(Definition of sanction from the Cambridge Academic Content Dictionary © Cambridge University Press)

"sanction" in Business English

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sanctionnoun

uk   us   /ˈsæŋkʃən/
[C, usually plural] POLITICS an ​officialorder to ​stop or ​limittrade or ​communication with a country in ​order to make it obey ​internationallaw: sanctions on sth This ​averted the threat of American sanctions on Japanese ​carexports.impose sanctions against/on sb The UN Security Council ​imposed sanctions on the country to ​curb its ​nuclearprogram. economic/​financial/​trade sanctions drop/​ease/​lift sanctions apply/​enforce sanctions international sanctions
[C] LAW a punishment given when someone does not obey a ​rule or a ​law: criminal/​legal sanctions The ​State Department ​needs to ​determine how it will apply sanctions. He could face sanctions if a ​judgeconcludes he ​violated the ​terms of his ​probation.
[U] LAW formal or ​legalapproval or ​permission: sanction for sth Agricultural ​companies in the ​area cannot get official sanction for ​logging.

sanctionverb [T]

uk   us   /ˈsæŋkʃən/
to ​formally give ​permission for something: sanction a bid/deal The ​directors would only sanction an €18 million ​bid. The ​government has sanctioned 20% ​incometaxrelief .
LAW to punish someone for not obeying a ​law or ​rule: sanction sb for (doing) sth The ​state is threatening to sanction ​employers for ​hiringillegalworkers.
(Definition of sanction from the Cambridge Business English Dictionary © Cambridge University Press)
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“sanction” in Business English

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