Bernardino Leon

Director General

H.E. Bernardino León is Director General of the Emirates Diplomatic Academy (EDA). In this role, he works with the Board of Trustees to consolidate the status of the Academy as a global thought leader in diplomatic studies. As the head of the Academy’s international faculty, he works to ensure the highest standards of diplomatic education in nurturing the next generation of Emirati diplomats.

A veteran diplomat with a career spanning over 27 years, H.E. Bernardino León has served as the UN Special Representative and Head of the UN Support Mission in Libya, and played an instrumental role in brokering the Libyan political agreement and the Presidential Council that concluded the civil war. Previously, he completed tenures as the European Union Special Representative to the Southern Mediterranean, Secretary General at the Spanish Prime Minister’s Office and the office of the Deputy Minister of Foreign Affairs.

His expertise includes mediation and negotiation, spanning intercultural dialogue, security, energy and migration. In collaboration with Edward Said and Daniel Barenboim, H.E. Bernardino León also played a pivotal role in establishing the Barenboim-Said Foundation. In addition, he is affiliated with diverse human rights initiatives, particularly in the Arab world.

H.E. Bernardino León has worked extensively in the Middle East, playing a key role in the EU “peace team” delegation that followed the Oslo process. Following the events of the Arab Spring, he also mediated crucial talks in Libya, Egypt and Tunisia. He was posted in Algeria during the internal conflict in the early 1990s.

H.E. Bernardino León holds a diploma in International Relations from the University of Barcelona and a degree in Law from the University of Malaga in Spain, and followed post graduate courses at King’s College London and Sorbonne University.