Villarino was currently Borrell's chief of staff, a position he reached after the investigation into the 'Ghali case' was archived.
King Felipe VI has decided to appoint the diplomat Camilo Villarino Marzo as the new head of his House, replacing Jaime Alfonsín Alfonso, who will leave office throughout the month of February but will continue to serve as the monarch's private advisor, as announced by Zarzuela in a statement.
Villarino, a career diplomat, currently serves as chief of staff of the EU High Representative for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy, Josep Borrell, of whom he was already chief of staff when he held the position of Minister of Foreign Affairs.
Born in Zaragoza in 1964, married and father of three daughters, Villarino has been a member of the Diplomatic Service since 1989. Since then, he has worked, among others, at the Embassy in Morocco, where he was minister counselor between 2013 and 2017, and in the United States , where he served as advisor for Transatlantic Relations and Security and Defense Affairs between 2008 and 2013.
Furthermore, between 1997 and 2002 he was assigned to different positions at the Permanent Representation to the EU and has also worked at the Embassy in Croatia. Between 2002 and 2008 he was Deputy Director General for EU Institutional Affairs at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs.
His previous position, before going with Borrell to Brussels, was that of chief of staff of the successive Foreign Ministers since 2017, starting with the diplomat Alfonso Dastis, with the PP Government, and continuing with the now High Representative of the EU , Margarita Robles when she held the position on an interim basis and then the aforementioned González-Laya. His dismissal occurred with the arrival of José Manuel Albares at the Santa Cruz Palace.
Villarino will be the fourth diplomat to hold the position of head of the King's Household, although the first for Felipe VI. Already before, with Juan Carlos I, José Fernando de Almansa, Rafael Spottorno and Alberto Aza occupied this position.
Those who know him assure Europa Press that he is a brilliant, serious and hardworking diplomat, and also prudent and quite a perfectionist and enjoys wide recognition among his colleagues in the Diplomatic Career. "Great success of the King," summarizes one of them.
Regarding Alfonsín, whose replacement occurs under article 65.2 of the Constitution, Zarzuela has indicated that "he has been in the service" of Don Felipe for almost 30 years, first as head of his Secretariat (1995-2014). when he was Prince of Asturias and then as head of his House since his accession to the throne in 2014, the King "wishes to continue counting on your valuable and loyal advice."
For this reason, Alfonsín will be Felipe VI's "private advisor" starting in February and "in this capacity, he will continue to provide him with the advice he requires and will carry out the functions entrusted to him" by the monarch.
INVESTIGATED BY THE 'GHALI CASE'
The future head of the King's House was investigated in relation to the entry into Spain of the leader of the Polisario Front, Brahim Ghali, in April 2021 to receive treatment for COVID-19 by the Court of Instruction Number 7 of Zaragoza, although his case was finally archived.
Specifically, he was investigated, like the then Minister of Foreign Affairs, Arancha González Laya, whose chief of staff he was, for the alleged crime of prevarication, concealment or falsehood in the management of the arrival to Spain of Ghali, whom the The Government claimed that it had welcomed them for humanitarian reasons.
It should be remembered that that episode caused strong unrest in Morocco, which was not informed in advance, which led Rabat to withdraw its ambassador from Madrid and opened a diplomatic crisis that was only overcome after the letter from the President of the Government, Pedro Sánchez. , to Mohamed VI supporting the autonomy plan for the Sahara.
Precisely, one of the first to congratulate Villarino was González Laya. The former minister has considered in a message on