prohibition of commerce and trade with a particular country or group of countries

An embargo is when a government refuses to trade with a country or a certain part of a country. This is usually because of a political problem inside the country. It differs from a blockade in not requiring a state of war or obliging other countries to stop trading.

As with other economic sanctions, an embargo stops trade between countries. This means that the countries in question will get poorer. The hope is that the problem within the country will stop.