Ichilov spokesperson leaves post after controversial press conference with freed hostage

Renee Ghert-Zand is the health reporter and a feature writer for The Times of Israel.

Avi Shoshan leaves his position as spokesperson for Tel Aviv’s Ichilov Medical Center following controversy over the October 24 press conference held there in which freed hostage Yocheved Lifshitz criticized Israeli failures and spoke well of her captors. The event was considered a propaganda win for Hamas.

Lifshitz, 85, was taken hostage by terrorists from her home in Kibbutz Nir Oz on October 7 as Hamas brutally attacked Israeli communities near Gaza. Lifshitz’s husband Oded was also seized and is still in captivity.

Lifshitz and another hostage, Nurit Cooper, 79, were freed and returned to Israel on October 23, for what Hamas cited as humanitarian reasons.

The October 24 press conference in the hospital lobby appeared to be hastily put together and disorganized. Some criticized the government for failing to oversee the event, and the hospital was blamed by others for arranging it.

Shoshan, who served as Ichilov’s spokesperson for 13 years, was called to a pre-dismissal hearing as per Israeli labor law. He announced on social media today that he is no longer employed by the hospital.

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