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|André Azoulay (left) and Yasser Arafat (right) (Copyright Creative Commons).|
|Senior adviser to King Mohammed VI|
17 April 1941 |
André Azoulay (born 17 April 1941) is a senior adviser to King Mohammed VI of Morocco. He previously advised Mohammed's father, King Hassan II. He currently presides over the Anna Lindh Euro-Mediterranean Foundation for the Dialogue Between Cultures, based in Alexandria, Egypt. He is also President of the Executive Committee of the Foundation for the Three Cultures and the Three Religions, based in Seville, Spain, a founding member of the C-100 Davos Forum for the Dialogue of Civilisations and religions, and was formerly Executive Vice-President of the BNP Paribas, Paris.
Born in Essaouira-Mogador (Morocco) in 1941, André Azoulay was educated in Paris where he studied economics, journalism and international relations. Previously to his current position as Counsellor to the King of Morocco, A. Azoulay, had a long career within the Paribas Bank in Paris (1968-1990) where, as Executive Vice-President, he covered the Middle East and North Africa Regions as well as heading the bank’s Public Affairs department.
As Counsellor of the late King Hassan II from (1991to1999), and since then of King Mohammed VI, André Azoulay has largely contributed to the implementation of economic reforms, which have been applied throughout the Kingdom since their inception in the early 90s. He also played a significant role in the privatisation and deregulation programs which began in 1993. He emphasized the need for sustaining the role of the private sector and encouraging the international investment to sustain economic growth in Morocco. A. Azoulay has also largely contributed to promote Morocco throughout the world.
A. Azoulay is also known for his historical input in the follow-up of the peace process in the Middle East and the many initiatives he has been involved in the perspective of deepening the logic of reconciliation between Jews and Muslims. In addition to his professional responsibilities André Azoulay has always fought for peace and dialogue between the Arab Muslim World and that of the Jewish communities in Europe, the United States, Morocco as well as the Arab and Jewish diasporas worldwide.
For over 40 years A. Azoulay has taken an active part in supporting the activities of different movements and associations whose vocation is the two states solution (Palestine-Israel) and to help the process of better understanding and mutual respect between Islam and the Western World.
President of the Executive Committee of the Foundation of the Three Cultures and the Three Religions based in Seville (Spain) he is one of the founders of the Aladin Group (Paris) created to promote mutual knowledge and intercultural relations among Muslims and Jews.
In August 2005 A. Azoulay was also nominated member of the “High Level Group” for the “Alliance of Civilizations, set up by the United Nations. Instigated by Spain and co-sponsored by Turkey, this initiative is addressing the issue of the relations between Islam and the Western world.
In this context, he was elected the 5th of March 2008 and reelected the 9th of September 2011 as President of the Euro-Mediterranean Anna Lindh Foundation, and member of the Executive Committee of the Mediterranean Council for Culture (Paris) as well as Board member of the Mediterranean Study and Research Center (Marseille) the Yala online leadership Academy and the Institut de Prospective et d’Etudes pour le Monde Méditerranéen (Paris).
Member of the Board of Al Akhawayne University (Ifrane), the Mediterranean University (Fès) and the High Council of the Alliance Israelite Universelle, A. Azoulay belongs to the Scientific Committee of “Medinas” a think-tank created by the World Bank and the European Investment Bank to protect, restore and promote the “Medinas” in the Arab World. He is also member of the boards of the Institute Pierre Mendès-France (Paris) and YALA (Young Araba Leaders for Peace).
Belonging to the Board of several economic and financial institutions, André Azoulay is a member of the Royal Academy of Morocco and of the Royal Academy of Spain for Economic and Financial Sciences. He has been honoured with the titles of “Commandeur dans l’Ordre du Trône” (Morocco) and he has received many awards and titles of honour throughout the world (France, Spain, Italy, Germany, U.K., Portugal, Brazil, Mexico, Argentina).
With his wife Katia, also born in Essaouira, who published 2 books “Essaouira-Mogador : Parfums d’Enfance” and “Essaouira-Mogador : Passion partagée”, he is the architect of the renaissance of the city they both hold very dear to their hearts. André Azoulay is fervent in the promotion and revival of his home town which has a specific place in the historical, cultural and spiritual heritage of Morocco. He is the founder President of the Association Essaouira-Mogador which has established since 1992 an original approach to the durable development based on its cultural diversity and spiritual legacy.
Essaouira is justly proud to host seven music festivals a year, ranging from classical to lyrical. They include the renowned Gnawa and World Music Festival, the Chamber Music with “le Printemps Musical des Alizés” and the rich Judeo-Muslim repertoire of Andalusian-Atlantic Festival, a unique event in the world inviting on the same stage, every year, poets, musicians and singers, Muslims and Jews, to keep alive and to perform their common heritage and legacy.
- Fair or not? Al-Ahram Weekly.
- Stern, Yoav (29 October 2008). "Morocco king's Jewish aide urges Israel to adopt Saudi peace plan". Haaretz.