MIGUEL ÁNGEL MORATINOS UN High Representative for the Alliance on Civilizations and former Spanish Minister of Foreign Affairs
MIGUEL ÁNGEL MORATINOS

Miguel Ángel Moratinos Cuyaubé (born 8 June 1951) is a Spanish diplomat and politician, a member of the Socialist Workers’ Party and was member of Congress, where he represented Córdoba. Sine 7 January 2019 is the UN High-Representative for the Alliance of Civilizations. Born in 1951, Moratinos graduated in Law and Political Sciences at the University Complutense in Madrid, and then in Diplomatic Studies at the Diplomatic School of Spain.

Working with Javier Solana, who was then Spanish foreign minister, Moratinos helped prepare the Euro-Mediterranean dialogue launched in November 1995 in Barcelona.Between 1996 and 2003, Moratinos was the European Union Special Representative for the Middle East, based in Cyprus and Brussels. In this capacity, he attended most meetings of EU foreign ministers. During his time in office, the European Union – which had already been the biggest financial contributor to the region – also became increasingly vocal about Israeli-Palestinian relations.

Moratinos served as Minister of Foreign Affairs in the Government of José Luis Rodríguez Zapatero from 18 April 2004 until 21 October 2010, when he was replaced by Trinidad Jimenez.

By the end of 2009, Moratinos was mentioned by news media as a potential candidate for the position of High Representative of the Union for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy; the post later went to Catherine Ashton instead. In September 2006, Moratinos joined UK Minister for Europe Geoff Hoon and Gibraltar’s Chief Minister Peter Caruana in signing the Cordoba Agreement, an agreement to establish a Tripartite forum for co-operation on Gibraltar.[9] As part of the agreement, he attended talks in Gibraltar in July 2009, making him the first Spanish minister to ever make an official visit to the British Overseas Territory.

In September 2006, Moratinos became the first government official to appear before the European Parliament’s committee investigating CIA activity in Europe.

In 2009, Moratinos sent a confidential note to U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton warning that Spanish public opinion could turn anti-American if Spain disclosed a study on contamination caused by the 1966 Palomares B-52 crash, according to a note contained in the WikiLeaks documents and published at the time by the newspaper El País. In 2010, Moratinos announced that Spain was willing to take in five inmates from the American military prison in Guantánamo Bay, Cuba.

In his capacity as minister, Moratinos was the Chairman-in-Office of the Organization for Security and Co-operation in Europe (OSCE) in 2007. On 17 August 2007, he appointed Croatian diplomat and ex-minister Miomir Žužul, “to be his personal representative in a mission to Georgia on (a) missile incident that took place on 6 August,” alleged to be a Russian missile strike on Georgian territory.

Following the Bolivian general election in December 2005, Moratinos summoned the Vatican’s envoy to Spain after a comedian for conservative radio station Cadena COPE held a five-minute telephone conversation with the newly elected president of Bolivia, Evo Morales, while claiming to be the Spanish prime minister.[16]

In October 2006, Moratinos announced that EADS CASA, a division of the European defense company EADS, had decided to cancel a deal on selling 12 military transport planes to Venezuela because American government objections made it unfeasible.

In 2007, U.S. Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice criticized Spain for not doing more to support dissidents in communist Cuba, after Morationos chose not to meet with Cuban dissidents during a visit to the United States in April 2007. In 2010, he took part in the tripartite negotiations with Cuban President Raúl Castro and Roman Catholic bishop Jaime Ortega that resulted in pardons being granted to 52 Black Spring prisoners on the condition that they go into exile in Spain.

In late 2009, Moratinos was at the forefront of efforts to reinstate ousted President Manuel Zelaya of Honduras.