The Betic-Rif arc is one of the smallest and tightest orogenic arcs on Earth, and together with its extensional hinterland, the Alborán Domain, it formed between two colliding continents. The region provides examples of a range of tectonic processes that are not predictable from the rules of rigid-plate tectonics. The Alborán Domain reveals two stages of subduction and accretion, with different thermal histories and mechanisms of exhumation. The external Betic-Rif thrust belt illustrates four processes that create an arcuate orogen and a strongly divergent pattern of slip vectors: () the interaction between the westward moving Alborán Domain and the converging African and Iberian margins, () divergence in relative motion due to extension within the Alborán Domain, () slip partitioning onto strike-slip faults within the arc, and () vertical-axis rotations resulting from oblique convergence on the limbs of the arc.

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The Betic-Rif Arc and Its Orogenic Hinterland: A Review: Supplemental Video 1

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