Casa Árabe | About us

Where Spain and the Arab world meet

Since it was founded in 2006, Casa Árabe has worked every day to achieve the goal of building bridges, strengthening bilateral and multilateral political relations, promoting and assisting with economic, cultural and educational relations, and providing training and furthering understanding about the Arab and Muslim world.

In other words, Casa Árabe is a space for mutual knowledge and shared reflection: a meeting point between Spain and the Arab world.


Casa Árabe was established as an inter-administrative entity under public law, run as part of the General Administration of the Spanish State,  with its own legal status, full capacity to act and own assets. The consortium is made up of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Cooperation (MAEC), the Spanish International Cooperation Agency  (AECID), the Autonomous Regional Government of Andalusia, the Autonomous Region of Madrid, the Municipal Government of Madrid and the Municipal Government of Cordoba.

Casa Árabe is operated as the strategic center for Spain’s relations with the Arab world, a meeting point where different role-players and institutions, both private and public, from the worlds of business, education, academia, politics and culture can dialogue, interact, establish lines of cooperation and undertake joint projects.

Since it was founded in 2006, Casa Árabe has carried out its tasks as an active platform and tool for Spain’s public diplomacy, with activities which it has integrated into those of a strong network of similar Casas, including the Casa de América, Casa Asia, Casa África, Casa del Mediterráneo and Centro Sefarad-Israel.

In order to complete its mission, Casa Árabe possesses two headquarters, one located in Madrid and the other in Cordoba, which provide it with a privileged geographic position not only in the Mediterranean region, but also as a mediator of exchanges between the Americas and the countries on the Arabian Gulf, where the presence of Spanish companies and professionals is growing larger and larger.

Coupled with its physical location is its strategic positioning in the digital world, which is carried out using an innovative Internet portal adapted to the new practices and possibilities of mobile technology, along with a strong and dynamic presence on social networks. This virtual dimension is undoubtedly one of its priority areas of activity, because it is the channel of communication required to put into action the principles of mutual relationships and knowledge upon which the institution’s origins were built. It is because of this that the virtual version of Casa Árabe, through its cross-cutting areas of activity, is able to produce and distribute online resources with specialized contents that acquire added value on their digital journey through new media.

In the end, all of these factors are essential in terms of achieving the institution’s ultimate goals: promoting economic relations, spreading knowledge, channeling inter-cultural dialogue and analyzing and mediating in the socio-political changes which are affecting Arab and Muslim countries.


Education and the Economy

Within today’s context of political transformation in the Arab countries and economic crisis in Europe, it is indispensable for us to keep channels open for information and analysis, as well as to provide training and perform reflection, all of which makes it possible to debate today’s problems and challenges. At the same time, Spain’s foreign trade sector and the internationalization of Spanish companies have been key vectors for growth in prior crises and are playing the same role at the present time, in Arab countries in particular, due to their development needs and growth potential, all within a context in which hydrocarbons markets continue on a path of expansion.

This area of work combines Casa Árabe’s socio-economic and business program with its educational work, including the Arabic Language Center, with the objective of offering training to youths and professionals so as to support the internationalization of Spanish talent and the consolidation of their presence in Arab countries.


Since the Arab Uprisings that began in Tunisia in late 2010, Arab societies and governments have had to deal with a highly complex period of transition, in which the challenges they face consist of avoiding a return to autocratic practices, instead building stronger democratic systems, developing an active civil society and putting transparent institutions into operation. The Governance program is an attempt to ensure that the changes in paradigm are reflected in the relations of power and the transformations which are taking place at the local, regional and worldwide levels, and in different sectors (public, private and civil) within the context of globalization.

In this sense, the scope of action of our public diplomacy encompasses the dimensions of international relations beyond just traditional diplomacy; for example, there is interaction between groups and interests in one country and those of another country, in Track II diplomacy dynamics. Other examples include the drafting of reports on foreign affairs and their impact on policy, as well as seminars which encourage reflection and a better understanding of the contemporary Arab world.

Using Spain’s experience as a starting point, Casa Árabe offers assistance through knowledge, creates and coordinates channels of communication, and supports new role-players who are participating in these processes in Arab countries. To do so, it actively cooperates with other Spanish institutions, such as the AECID (Spanish International Development Cooperation Agency), the Spain Brand commission, the Spanish Transition Foundation, the Real Instituto Elcano, the Pluralism and Coexistence Foundation, the Network of Casas and the Club of Madrid, just to name a few examples.


The third pillar upon which Casa Árabe’s endeavor is supported involves the promotion of Arab culture amongst the public in our country. Casa Árabe’s film screenings create a constant window which provides a look at the current realities of Arab and Muslim countries, through both fictional feature films and an enormous number of documentary films. The exhibition halls at both headquarters host contemporary art exhibits and exhibitions with educational or historical content, all aimed not only at increasing the visibility of the artists themselves, but also at creating spaces for thought and knowledge. In the field of literature and essays, the presentation of new publishing firms is a part of our ongoing program, in close collaboration with authors and publishers. And along the same lines, our scheduled musical performances are also notable, serving as a vehicle with a great outreach for creating intercultural dialogue.

The Cultural Program is also a way to develop cooperative relations with institutions, creators and professionals from culture industries in the Arab world and, as such, it has become a dynamic, essential tool for cultural diplomacy and dialogue between the most innovative sectors in societies, including the promotion and furthering of the internationalization of our most creative professional sectors, such as architecture.

Last of all, from a contemporary perspective, highlighting the value of our Arab and Islamic historical legacy and the knowledge surrounding it is one of the focal points of action within Casa Árabe’s cultural program, and therefore in the international area –in both the Arab world and Europe and the Americas– we place an emphasis on this feature which makes Spain stand out and places us at an unmatchable cultural crossroads.


Casa Árabe is an institutional consortium created in July 2006 through a cooperation agreement signed by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Cooperation, the Spanish International Development Cooperation Agency (AECID), the Autonomous Regional Government of Andalusia, the Autonomous Regional Government of Madrid, the Municipal Government of Madrid and the Municipal Government of Cordoba.

It is presided over by the Minister of Foreign Affairs and Cooperate, and its Vice-Presidents are the President of the Autonomous Regional Government of Andalusia, the President of the Autonomous Regional Government of Madrid, the Mayor of Madrid and the Mayor of Cordoba. The King and Queen of Spain are its patrons of honor.
The integration of its programs with those of the different institutions which make up the Casa Árabe Consortium is a central factor in making its activities effective.



José Manuel Albares Bueno

Minister for Foreign Affairs, European Union and Cooperation


Juan Manuel Moreno Bonilla  
President of the regional government of Andalusia

Isabel Natividad Díaz Ayuso
President of the regional government of Madrid

José Luis Martínez Almeida   
Mayor of Madrid

José María Bellildo
Mayor of Cordoba


Ángeles Moreno Bau
State Secretary for Foreign and Global Affairs

Carmen Magariños Casal

Director of Cooperation with Africa and Asia, Spanish Agency of International Cooperation for Development (AECID)
Alberto José Ucelay Urech 
Director General for Magreb, Mediterranean and Middle East

Ana Esmeralda Martínez Sáez

Director General of Economic Diplomacy 

Irene Lozano Domingo

A Spanish thinker, writer and politician, Irene Lozano has authored ten books and has been bestowed with the Espasa Essay Award. She was the State Secretary for España Global (2018-2020), where she led Spain’s democratic reputation strategy, performing major activity in diplomatic and international communications. She has presided over the High Council of Sports (2020-2021), as well as being a member of Madrid’s Autonomous Regional Assembly and Spain’s National Parliament, where she received awards for “Best New Member of Parliament” (2012) and “Member of Parliament of the Year” (2015).
She founded the school of philosophy known as The Thinking Campus and has directed the program “More Plato and Less WhatsApp” on the Cadena Ser radio show “La Ventana.” She has taught and lectured at several universities and institutions, including CUNEF, the Deusto Business School, the Cervantes Institute, UIMP and the University of Seville. Over the last 20 years, she has played an active role in national debate through her analyses of current affairs, as well as domestic and foreign politics, appearing in Spain’s most important newspapers: El País, El Mundo, ABC, El Confidencial, El Mundo (at the last of these, she was an editor for ten years). She has also been a regular contributor to some of the best-known radio and television talk shows, including TVE’s “Desayunos” and “Al Rojo Vivo.” She has also collaborated with foreign media such as the Swedish newspaper Expressen and BBC Radio.

She earned her bachelor’s degree in Hispanic Linguistics from the Universidad Complutense, a further degree in Philosophy from Birckbek College at the University of London and a Master’s degree in Philosophy from the UNED.

Since November 19, 2021, she has held the position of general director of Casa Árabe.
HE Hala Keyrouz
Ambassador of the Republic of Lebanon

HE Areej Hawamdeh

Ambassador of the Hashemite Kingdom of Jordan

HE Karima Benyaich

Ambassador of the Kingdom of Morocco

HE Majid Al-Suwaidi
Ambassador of the United Arab Emirates

HE Boubakar Kane
Ambassador of Mauritania

HE Abdalla Bin Ibrahim Abdulrahman Sultan Al Hamar
Ambassador of the State of Qatar

HE. Walid B. Abuabdalla   
Ambassador of Libya

HE. Azzam Abdulkarim Algain

Ambassador of the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia

HE Fatma Omrani Chargui
Ambassador of the Republic of Tunisia

HE Youssef Mekkawy
Ambassador of the Arab Republic of Egypt

HE Husni Abdel Wahed
Ambassador of the Diplomatic Mission of Palestine

HE Aws Abdullah Alawd

Ambassador of the Republic of Yemen
HE Khalifa Alkhorafi
Ambassador of the State of Kuwait
HE Salih Husain Ali Ali   
Ambassador of the Republic of Iraq

HE Maha Suleiman Taha Ayoub

Ambassador of the Republic of Sudan

HE Omar Al Kathiri

Ambassador of the Sultanate of Oman
HE Malek Twal  
Ambassador of the Office of the League of Arab States

Farouk Benmokhtar

Chargé d'affaires of the Embassy of the Popular and Democratic Republic of Algeria