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Act of war whereby one party blocks entry to or departure from an enemy area, often a coast. Blockades are regulated by international law and custom, which require advance warning to neutral states and impartial application. Penalties for breach of blockade are seizure of ship and cargo and their possible condemnation as lawful prizes. Neutral ships may not be destroyed for blockade running.
This entry comes from Encyclopædia Britannica Concise. For the full entry on blockade, visit Britannica.com.