Our Most Read Posts of 2021

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As the year draws to a close and we move into 2022, I would like to thank our readers for coming back to us time and again over the course of the year. I also wish you all a very Happy New Year. Below is a list of our most read posts of 2021. In 2020, the list of our most read posts was dominated by discussion of covid with two-third of the pieces in that list reflecting or commenting on legal aspects of the pandemic. For most of the world, and many of us individually, much of this year has continued to be dominated by, or at least affected by pandemic. Life is certainly, or at least not yet, back to normal, if it ever will get back to pre-covid normal! However, this year’s list of most read posts suggests that interest in legal aspects of covid has declined somewhat. Only three of our 20 most read posts are covid related, with only one of those written in 2021. Interest in covid seems to have been surpassed this year by that in another global threat – climate change! There are four posts in this year’s list list dealing with that topic. Interestingly, all four of those posts are about climate litigation, in the European Court of Human Rights and in the Dutch Supreme Court. Indeed, the list of the 21st to the 30th most read posts sees two further posts also about climate litigation-  in the Irish and Dutch national courts. It would be interesting to speculate on what has prompted this increased interest. Thoughts in the comments box below please!

As usual, the list also includes commentary on judicial decisions from a range of international and national courts. However, the decisions that were the subject of comment were not always from this year with the top 6 posts including commentary on the ICJ’s Chagos Advisory Opinion of 2018 and the South China Sea Arbitration award of 2016

I am delighted to announce that we have been joined in the past couple of months by a new Associate Editor. A warm welcome to Tal Gross!She holds an LL.B. from The Hebrew University of Jerusalem. Previously, Tal was the Deputy Editor of the Israel Law Review and taught legal research and writing at the Hebrew University. During this time, she coached the university’s winning teams for both the ICRC and Jean-Pictet International Humanitarian Law Competitions. 

Special thanks to Kate Mitchell, our former Associate Editor, who left us a couple of months ago to focus on her very busy job as a legal adviser in the Australian Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade. We are really grateful to her for the many contributions she made to the running of the blog. 

So now, here is that list of most read posts for 2021:

  1. Craig Eggett & Sarah Thin, Clarification and Conflation: Obligations Erga Omnes in the Chagos Opinion (May 2019)

  2. Marko Milanovic, Georgia v. Russia No. 2: The European Court’s Resurrection of Bankovic in the Contexts of Chaos (Jan. 2021)

  3. Rebecca Barber, Could the General Assembly Exclude Myanmar from the UN by Refusing to Recognise the Credentials of its Ruling Military Junta? (Feb. 2021)

  4. Miles Jackson & Antonios Tzanakopoulos, Aerial Incident of 23 May 2021: Belarus and the Ryanair Flight 4978 (May 2021)

  5. Nicholas A. Ioannides & Constantinos Yiallourides, A Commentary on the Dispute Concerning the Maritime Delimitation in the Indian Ocean (Somalia v Kenya) (Oct. 2021)

  6. Gilbert Guillaume, Rocks in the Law of the Sea: Some comments on the South China Sea Arbitration Award (Feb. 2021)

  7. Peter Tzeng, “Taking China to the International Court of Justice over COVID-19” (April 2020)

  8. Diane Desierto, Equitable COVID Vaccine Distribution and Access: Enforcing International Legal Obligations under Economic, Social, and Cultural Rights and the Right to Development (Feb. 2021)

  9. Joseph Weiler, Cancelling Carl Schmitt? (Aug. 2021)

  10. Michael Schmitt, Foreign Cyber Interference in Elections: An International Law Primer, Part I (Oct. 2020)

  11. Başak Çali, Withdrawal from the Istanbul Convention by Turkey: A Testing Problem for the Council of Europe(March 2021)

  12. Noura Erakat, Beyond Discrimination: Apartheid is a Colonial Project and Zionism is a form of Racism (July 2021)

  13. André Nollkaemper & Laura Burgers, A New Classic in Climate Change Litigation: The Dutch Supreme Court Decision in the Urgenda Case (Jan. 2020)

  14. Corina Heri, The ECtHR’s Pending Climate Change Case: What’s Ill-Treatment Got To Do With It? (Dec. 2020)

  15. Dapo Akande, The Importance of Legal Criteria for Statehood: A Response to Jure Vidmar (Aug. 2013)

  16. Sarah Thin, The Curious Case of the ‘Legal Effect’ of ICJ Advisory Opinions in the Mauritius/Maldives Maritime Boundary Dispute (Feb. 2021)

  17. Ole Pedersen, The European Convention of Human Rights and Climate Change – Finally! (Sept. 2020)

  18. Paul Clark, Gerry Liston & Ioannis Kalpouzos, Climate change and the European Court of Human Rights: The Portuguese Youth Case (Oct. 2020)

  19. E. Tendayi Achiume, Black Lives Matter and the UN Human Rights System: Reflections on the Human Rights Council Urgent Debate (Dec. 2020)

  20. Caroline Foster, Justified Border Closures do not violate the International Health Regulations 2005 (June 2020)




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Tamás Hoffmann says

January 1, 2022

Great posts, without exception!
However, if this is the most read posts of 2021, why do you have several posts from 2020 also included?

Dapo Akande says

January 2, 2022

Dear Tamás,

Thanks for the question! I apologise for the confusion caused by my description of the list as containing the most read posts of 2021. The point of the list is to indicate what our readers were most interested in in the year under review. So, the list contains the posts most read in 2021 rather than the posts written in 2021 that were most read!

Although many of posts on the blog deal with matters of current interest, it is always interesting to me (and I must say also pleasing) to see that many posts have a significant shelf life and continue to be read years after they were first published.

Tamás Hoffmann says

January 3, 2022

Dear Dapo,

I guess I should have guessed, thanks for the clarification!