The Jemad, Miguel Ángel Villarroya, resigns after his controversial vaccination, although he defends that he followed the protocol and did not resort to “privileges”

The Chief of the Defense Staff (JEMAD), General Miguel Ángel Villarroya, has requested this Saturday his dismissal from the Minister of Defense, Margarita Robles, despite the fact that he defends that he followed the established protocols and at no time took advantage of “non-justifiable privileges”. Defense sources have assured that the minister has accepted her resignation.

The Defense Staff (EMAD) has reported that General Villarroya has made this decision “early in the morning” this Saturday and “with a clear conscience.” The dismissal has been transferred to the minister in a letter in which she maintains that her performance as head of the military leadership, as during her 45-year career in the Armed Forces, “has tried to be honest and dominated by the spirit of service and of love to Spain”.

Despite the controversy over his vaccination, the one who has been JEMAD for the last year maintains that the decision to receive the vaccine against Covid-19 was “correct”, but it is “deteriorating the public image” of the Armed Forces and putting in he doubts his own “honesty”.

As justified, the vaccination took place “in compliance with its obligations, in accordance with established protocols and with the sole purpose of preserving the integrity, continuity and effectiveness of the operational chain of the Armed Forces.”

Until now, the JEMAD insists that “he has always made an effort to serve as an example to his subordinates and to do the right thing” and has made the decision to resign from the position with the aim of “not damaging” the image of the Armed Forces.

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General Villarroya was appointed head of the military leadership by Margarita Robles just over a year ago, on January 14, 2020, in one of his first decisions after the investiture of the coalition government.

Catalan with extensive experience in national and international destinations, before JEMAD he held the position of director of the Minister’s Technical Office, a position he had reached at the hands of the former ‘popular’ minister María Dolores de Cospedal.

Controversial vaccination in the EMAD

General Villarroya received the vaccine along with many other high-ranking military officials within the EMAD vaccination plan. As explained by the General Staff, the Armed Forces have been assigned by the Ministry of Health a quota of vaccines apart from those that are distributed among the autonomous communities to be supplied to the civilian population.

Within this quota, the Defense General Staff corresponds to a percentage for which an order of priorities was established: medical personnel, soldiers who are going to participate in international missions and, finally, the command structure following an age criterion. .

With this, within the General Staff, all its health personnel have already been vaccinated and the vaccine is being supplied to the troops who are going to be part of international operations, such as those who will soon embark on the Navy ships ‘Mine Sweeper’ ‘ and ‘Tajo’.

Once this procedure was completed, the third group in the order of priorities began, the operational structure to ensure command of operations. Since in this case the criterion is age, the generals were the first to receive the first dose of the vaccine, including the JEMAD. However, non-commissioned officers or civilians from the General Staff who met these requirements were also vaccinated.

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Minister’s report

After the news, which Robles acknowledged having learned through the media, the minister announced that she had requested a report from the JEMAD to find out how to act and the protocols that had guided the order of vaccinations.

The dismissal of General Villarroya comes after learning that the Minister of the Interior, Fernando Grande-Marlaska, decided this Friday the dismissal of the Civil Guard officer who was liaising with the Defense General Staff and who had also been vaccinated.

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