Access to a vaccine against coronavirus disease (covid-19) that is safe, effective and based on the best scientific developments is an essential component of the right of everyone to the enjoyment of the highest attainable standard of physical and mental health and the right of everyone to enjoy the benefits of scientific progress and its applications. States therefore have an obligation to take all the necessary measures, as a matter of priority and to the maximum of their available resources, to guarantee all persons access to vaccines against covid-19, without any discrimination. This statement builds on the previous statements of the Committee on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights of 6 April 2020 on the coronavirus disease (covid-19) pandemic and economic, social and cultural rights (E/C.12/2020/1) and of 27 November 2020 on universal and equitable access to vaccines for the coronavirus disease (covid-19) (E/C.12/2020/2). It is intended to remind States of their obligations under the International Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights in relation to universal access and affordability of vaccines against covid-19, particularly with regard to international cooperation and intellectual property.
It is a commonplace in the R2P discourse to describe accountability measures as key means to implement the responsibility to protect. In particular, the International Criminal Court is regularly highlighted as a central actor, both in the literature, the annual R2P reports issued by the UN Secretary-General, and the subsequent debates in the UN General Assembly. Conspicuously absent from this conversation is the principal judicial organ of the United Nations, the International Court of Justice (icj). This article examines the potential role of the ‘World Court’, as The Gambia in November 2019 started a new case under the UN Genocide Convention against Myanmar before the icj. Analysing the limitations and prospects and existing icj case-law, the article concludes that the International Court of Justice can make an important and unique contribution to the responsibility to protect.
Streaming services for audiobooks and ebooks have grown rapidly in recent years. The shift in consumption patterns has transformed both reading and publishing. One visible change is the attraction and importance of backlist titles. The article investigates how the relationship between frontlist and backlist in the bestseller segment has developed, and discusses the shift in the power balance between the two. By examining large-scale consumer behaviour data (6.23 million streams) from one of the key players in subscription-based digital bookselling – Storytel – we track book consumption both in detail and at a structural level. Our results show that backlist titles are increasingly important for bestselling authors who continue to publish frontlist titles, especially for fiction written in series. Streaming services foster new types of book consumption behaviour thanks to a combination of technology, media, reading habits, and social change.
Online book fairs are being held in Vietnam to replace traditional offline events that have been shelved owing to the COVID-19 crisis. This study aims to explore book consumers’ perceptions regarding digital book fairs and their evaluation of the first-ever national online book fair held in Vietnam. In-depth interviews were conducted to obtain insights from people who had attended the online book event. The findings provide acceptance of and support for the organization of digital book fairs during the COVID-19 pandemic. Attendees generally appreciated the convenience of the national online book fair and the promotional programmes offered by various publishers and distributors. Furthermore, some attendees enjoyed the novelty of the event and the feeling of being included in the reading community. Nevertheless, most of the attendees highlighted several limitations, especially the lack of social and face-to-face interaction. These findings have implications for online book fair organizers, publishers, and book distributors alike.
Impunity has been a major cause of the atrocity crimes committed by the Myanmar military, and accountability is generally seen as a central component of R2P. This article traces the changes of attitudes towards R2P-related measures in Myanmar. After 2017, voices gradually emerged from within Myanmar civil society in support of R2P, influenced by international efforts to ensure accountability and documentation. However, this support mostly came from ethnic minority groups. In the broader population and political leadership, calls for R2P were met with general hostility. Since the February 2021 coup, there has been a dramatic change of attitudes towards R2P, at least within the protest movement. However, the growing calls for R2P often reflect a desire for international military intervention that is unlikely to happen. Moreover, domestic efforts to hold the military accountable are now even more unlikely. International action to push for accountability is therefore still needed.