Andre Azoulay belongs to a select club - a club of one. He is the only Jew with political influence in the entire Arab Muslim world.
For the last six years he has served as adviser to king Muhammad Vl of Morocco, and before that spent 10 years advising the late Hassan ll. "It's been exalting, but difficult and stressful," he tells Guysen Israel News in a recent interview at the Seville meeting of 400 imams and rabbis in March.
One detects a certain exasperation in Azoulay's voice regarding prospects for peace between Jews and Arabs. " Things have become worse in the last year," he admits. "The road is long."
He sees himself as the sole representative of a millenarian Jewish presence. " Judaism was here well before Islam. We are not here through charity, protection or kindness. We are as legitimate as any one else. I feel I have inherited a great civilisation and this is what carries me through.
"I respect Muslims. Muslims must respect us. The history books have been distorted. I don't accept that history should be mutilated and (the Jews) amputated from it, as certain weak minds have tried to do."