Reserve Colonel Lior Lotan
Reserve Colonel Lior Lotan named next IDF spokesman. Photo by Courtesy of Public Relations
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Designated Israel Defense Forces Chief Yoav Galant on Wednesday named Colonel (Res.) Lior Lotan as his new spokesman, to replace Brig. Gen. Avi Benayahu.

Lotan was drafted into the elite General Staff unit in 1983 as a combatant and later took on the role of commander. In 1994 ,he was awarded the IDF chief's Medal of Honor for his part in an operation for the release of abducted IDF soldier Nachshon Waksman, during which he was seriously wounded.

Lotan also served as ommander in the IDF negotiating unit specializing in hostage situations, and as head of the Military Intelligence unit for hostages and missing persons.

For the last few years, the reserves colonel has been working in the private business sector. He has a law degree from Bar Ilan University.

Benayahu will end his role as IDF spokesman after three years in the office. He previously served as the commander of Army Radio.

Lotan's appointment came as a surprise to many; Galant's choice seems to have stemmed from his desire to appoint someone with the reputation of a fighter, but who also has acquired knowledge and experience on other levels.