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Javier Solana

Javier Solana 1999.jpg
High Representative for the Common Foreign and Security Policy
In office
18 October 1999 – 1 December 2009
Preceded by Jürgen Trumpf
Succeeded by Catherine Ashton
Secretary General of the Council of the European Union
In office
18 October 1999 – 1 December 2009
Preceded by Jürgen Trumpf
Succeeded by Pierre de Boissieu
Secretary General of the Western European Union
In office
20 November 1999 – 1 December 2009
Preceded by José Cutileiro
Succeeded by Arnaud Jacomet
9th Secretary General of the North Atlantic Treaty Organization
In office
5 December 1995 – 6 October 1999
Preceded by Sergio Balanzino (Acting)
Succeeded by George Robertson
Minister of Foreign Affairs
In office
16 June 1992 – 18 December 1995
Prime Minister Felipe González
Preceded by Francisco Fernández Ordóñez
Succeeded by Carlos Westendorp
Personal details
Francisco Javier Solana de Madariaga

14 July 1942 (1942-07-14) (age 79)
Madrid, Spain
Political party Spanish Socialist Workers' Party
Spouse(s) María de la Concepción Giménez Díaz-Oyuelos
Alma mater Complutense University
University of Virginia

Francisco Javier Solana de Madariaga, KOGF, KCMG (born 14 July 1942), is a Spanish physicist and Socialist politician. After serving in the Spanish government as Foreign Affairs Minister under Felipe González (1982–1995) and as the Secretary General of NATO (1995–1999), he was appointed the European Union's High Representative for Common Foreign and Security Policy, Secretary General of the Council of the European Union and Secretary-General of the Western European Union and held these posts from October 1999 until December 2009.

Background and career as a physicist

Javier Solana-1
At the joint press conference following the Russia-European Union summit

In 1965 he went to the United States, where he spent six years studying at various universities on a Fulbright Scholarship. He eventually enrolled in the Graduate School of Arts & Sciences of the University of Virginia in Charlottesville. There, he taught physics classes as a Teaching Assistant and carried on independent research; he also joined in the protests against the Vietnam War and was President of the Association of Foreign Students.

He received his doctorate in physics from Virginia in 1971. Returning to Spain he became a lecturer in solid-state physics at the Autonomous University of Madrid, UAM, and then in 1975 he became a Professor at Complutense University. During these years he published more than 30 articles.

Awards and honours

Spanish honours

Other countries


  • Charlemagne Prize (2003)
  • Vision for Europe Award, Edmond Israel Foundation (2003)
  • Statesman of the Year Award, EastWest Institute (2003)
  • Wateler Peace Prize, Carnegie Foundation (2006)
  • Peace Through Dialogue Medal, Munich Security Conference (2007)
  • Peace Award of the World Children's Parliament (2008)
  • Extraordinary Prize of the Spanish Ministry of Defence (2009)
  • Convivencia Award, Manuel Broseta Foundation (2009)
  • Charles V European Award, European Academy of Yuste Foundation (2010)
  • Ewald-von-Kleist Award, Munich Security Conference (2010)
  • Knight of Freedom Award, the Casimir Pulaski Foundation
  • Honorary degree (political science), London School of Economics
  • Gold Medal of the Jean Monnet Foundation for Europe (2011)

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