The EU’s first Arabic speaking regional media officer for the Middle East and North Africa (MENA) takes office today. Luis Miguel Bueno, an Arabic speaking European diplomat, will be based in Beirut, Lebanon. His role will be to communicate EU priorities, policies, positions and projects, which are of interest to the MENA region, in close engagement and interaction with the local and pan-Arabic media based in and focused on the region.
This appointment puts into practice the commitment to engage more with the Arab world, both on topics relevant to the region but also on other global issues such as the coronavirus pandemic and climate change, as recently highlighted by the High Representative of the European Union for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy Josep Borrell.
The new appointment should help extend the EU message in the local language to an ever wider audience in a neighbouring region of key strategic interest. This media engagement is being formally launched today with the Twitter account @EUinArabic. Over the next few weeks, Mr Bueno will focus on social media engagement with audiences in the Arab world through this Twitter account, before widening his tasks to regional media engagement and other social media platforms too.
This is the first time that the EU creates a post of regional media officer to act as spokesperson in the local language. He will work closely with the 15 EU Delegations present in the MENA region. With more than 15 years’ experience in diplomacy, first in the Spanish Ministry of Foreign Affairs and then at the European External Action Service, Mr Bueno has focused on the Middle East during most of his career. He started his professional experience in Arabic while he was deputy Head of the Spanish mission in Khartoum, Sudan in 2008. He then worked at the Spanish embassy in Amman, Jordan. Over the past seven years, he has been working in the Middle East Directorate at the European External Action Service in Brussels.