Blog of the International Journal of Constitutional Law

What’s New in Public Law

Matteo Mastracci, Digital Rights Researcher, Balkan Investigative Reporting Network (BIRN), and PhD Researcher, Koç University, Istanbul

In this weekly feature, I-CONnect publishes a curated reading list of developments in public law. “Developments” may include a selection of links to news, high court decisions, new or recent scholarly books and articles, and blog posts from around the public law blogosphere. To submit relevant developments for our weekly feature on “What’s New in Public Law,” please email

Developments in Constitutional Courts

  1. Following the introduction of the Super Green Pass last 24 January, France’s Constitutional Court has declared that the COVID-19 immunity passport, now required to enter public venues, should not be required for political events during the ongoing presidential campaign.
  2. South Korea’s Constitutional Court has ruled that the government’s 2016 shutdown of the Kaesong Industrial Complex did not violate the constitution, dismissing a lawsuit filed by South Korean citizens who run factories near the area.
  3. The Constitutional Court of Malta has dismissed an appeal filed by the German search and rescue NGO Sea Watch, ruling that the case was filed nine days too late. The case, originally filed in June 2018, was initiated due to the NGO’s claim that the four-month detention, due to administrative deficiencies, of one of its vessels in the port of Valletta had infringed its property rights.
  4. The Constitutional Court of Turkey dismissed the appeal filed by journalist Mehmet Güleş, a reporter for the Dicle News Agency (DİHA) on the basis that there was no interference with Güleş’s fundamental rights and freedoms guaranteed by the Constitution. The journalist, released from prison in 2021, was initially sentenced to 9 years, 4 months, 15 days in prison for “propagandizing for a terrorist organization” and “membership of the organization”
  5. The European Court of Human Rights (ECHR) has ruled that the pre-trial detention ordered by the competent Turkish authorities against the German-Turkish journalist Deniz Yücel ended up illegally restricting several of the applicant’s rights, including his right to liberty and security, right to compensation for unlawful detention, as well as freedom of expression.

In the News

  1. The EU High Representative for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy, Josep Borrell, during the EU-Serbia Stabilisation and Association Council meeting held in Brussels last January 25, has warned Serbia against genocide denial saying that it “is not compatible with European values”.
  2. The Italian parliament, still far from electing Sergio Mattarella’s successor, continues in the political stalemate sending political parties, yet again, into negotiations to come up with a viable candidate for the presidential election.
  3. The Kazakh parliament’s upper chamber, on January 27 approved a motion by the lower house to deprive the former president of his right to be lifetime chairman of the influential Security Council and the Assembly of Kazakhstan’s People.
  4. The Supreme Court of Russia has shortened the sentence of one of two former neo-Nazi activists convicted and jailed for their involvement in the killing of lawyer Stanislav Markelov and journalist Anastasia Baburova in 2009.
  5. US President Joe Biden, in a telephone conversation with Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky, has alerted that there is a “distinct possibility” that Russia might invade Ukraine next month.

New Scholarship

  1. Anna Dziedzic, Foreign Judges in the Pacific (2021) (exploring the phenomenon of the use of foreign judges on courts of constitutional jurisdiction, with case studies from nine Pacific states)
  2. Ignatius Yordan Nugraha, From ‘Margin of Discretion’ to the Principles of Universality and Non-Discrimination: A Critical Assessment of the ‘Public Morals’ Jurisprudence of the Human Rights Committee, (critically analysing the ‘public morals’ jurisprudence of the Human Rights Committee).
  3. Jeffrey A. Lenowitz, Constitutional Ratification without Reason (forthcoming, 2022) (analysing the nature and history of constitutional ratification procedures through an interdisciplinary approach)
  4. Matthias C Kettemann, Konrad Lachmayer (eds.), Pandemocracy in Europe. Power, Parliaments and People in Times of COVID-19 (2022) (analysing the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic on European democracies)
  5. Robert Rybski, German Radioactive Waste, Changes in Policy and Law, (January, 2022) (exploring constitutional obligations in regards to radioactive waste and discussing the field of radioactive waste management from the perspective of the German legal system)

Calls for Papers and Announcements

  1. As part of the International Law and Human Rights Unit (ILHRU) at the University of Liverpool, Associate Professor Vladislava Stoyanova (Faculty of Law, Lund University) will deliver a presentation in the online event “Positive Obligations under the European Convention on Human Rights – Within and Beyond Boundaries”. The event will be held online next March 10, 2022. 
  2. Following the launching of the virtual collection on judicial independence in Europe, the European Constitutional Law Review (EuConst) welcomes further submissions on the themes of judicial independence, judicial accountability and the role of judges in society.
  3. Leiden University is hosting the second Conference of the Research Group on Institutions for Conflict Resolution (Conflictoplossende Instituties). The conference, to be held next July 8-9, 2022, will be on the theme ‘Courts as an Arena for Societal Change’ and is featured as part of events taking place during Leiden European City of Science 2022. Deadline for abstract submissions is February 1, 2022.
  4. The Department of Law of the Faculty of Law, Economics and Finance of the University of Luxembourg is looking for a Postdoctoral researcher to conduct research in Law. Deadline for applications is February 15, 2022.
  5. The Faculty of Law of Radboud University welcome abstract submission for conference papers related to the digitalisation of justice systems and the role of courts and judges in a digitalised context. Deadline for abstract submissions is February 1, 2022.

Elsewhere Online

  1. Alex Walker, The Joint Committee on the Draft Online Safety Bill: steps in the right direction for democracy, The Constitution Unit Blog
  2. Blerina Gjoka, Albania’s Rama Appoints Spokesperson to Run New ‘Information’ Agency, B.I.R.D.
  3. Klentiana Mahmutaj, Will the Morocco-Nigeria Bilateral Investment Treaty Transform Sustainable Development into Hard Law?, EJIL: Talk!
  4. Nina Høy-Petersen, Public civility and hidden racism: duality of thought and action among white Norwegians, Center for Research on Extremism (C-REX)
  5. Spyridoula (Sissy) Katsoni, Is the Feministisation of the ECtHR’s Abortion-Related Jurisprudence a Realistic Expectation?, Völkerrechtsblog
  6. Susana de la Sierra, What rights do we have in the digital environment?, Digi Con
  7. Teresa Violante, Voting in the Pandemic, Verfassungsblog
  8. Xhorxhina Bami, Kosovo Special Court Extends Ex-President Thaci’s Detention, Balkan Insight


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