Major General Antonio Planells Palau, the current commanding general of the Marine Infantry (COMGEIM), has been appointed the new Admiral of the Fleet (ALFLOT). This is the first time in the history of the Spanish Navy that a Navy has assumed this position.
This appointment follows the takeover of the former ALFLOT, Admiral Antonio Martorell Lacave, last Thursday 11 in Madrid as Chief of Staff of the Navy (AJEMA) after his appointment on the 9th by the Council of Ministers on the proposal of the Minister of Defense. Admiral Martorell replaces Admiral Teodoro Lpez Caldern, who was promoted to Chief of Defense Staff (JEMAD) two weeks ago.
Major General Antonio Planells Palau, whom we interviewed in 2019, arrived at the headquarters of the Marine Infantry Force (FIM), the oldest in the world, in January 2018. Also in the same year (in September) he took over the command of the operation of the European Union naval forces EU NAVFOR Atalanta replaced the then Vice-Admiral Martorell Lacave, who led him to the challenge of setting up two separate general staffs in the Cadiz- Places to have San Fernando and Rota.
It is the first time that a general (divisional) of the marine infantry takes command of the fleet, which is also stationed at the Rota air force base, as this command is traditionally carried out by an admiral of the Navy General Corps of the Navy (equivalent to a Lieutenant General). It is also worth noting that General Planells will have three visors for a few days, that of ALFLOT, COMGEIM and that of the Atalanta Operations Command, although the latter will be handed over to Vice Admiral Eugenio Daz del Rio on February 19.
The appointment seems to be more than coherent as Defense Decree 3771/2008 of December 10th stated that the FIM became dependent on the fleet and therefore on the orders of ALFLOT than it was previously directly dependent on AJEMA, and therefore their organic Substance lost character within the Navy. (Julio Maz Sanz)
Photo: Maj. Gen. Antonio Planells Palau (left) with Admiral Martorell (Photo: United States Department of Defense)
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