|Rabbi Eliezer Berland|
|Birth name||Eliezer Berland|
|Alma mater||Knesses Chizkiyahu and Ponevezh Yeshiva|
Eliezer Berland (born 1937) is an Israeli Orthodox Jewish rabbi and rosh yeshiva affiliated with the Breslov Hasidic movement in Israel. As rosh yeshiva of Yeshivat Shuvu Bonim (also known as Yeshivat Nechamat Zion) in the Muslim Quarter of the Old City of Jerusalem, he has counseled and guided tens of thousands of Jews from secular backgrounds to draw closer to the Torah path. He is a member of Vaad Olami D'Chasedai Breslov (World Committee of Breslov Chassidim), a supervisory council for many Breslov activities.
Rabbi Berland was born in Haifa in 1937. While still a youth, he was recognized as a gifted student. He studied at the Knesses Chizkiyahu yeshiva in Kfar Hasidim under Rabbi Elyah Lopian and Rabbi Dov Yaffe. After his marriage to his wife, Tehilla, niece of Israeli Member of Knesset Shalom-Avraham Shaki, Rabbi Berland joined the Ponevezh Yeshiva kollel and, later, the Volozhin Kollel in Bnei Brak. He was a chavruta (study partner) with Rabbi Yaakov Yisrael Kanievsky, known as the Steipler Gaon.
After coming into contact with Breslover Hasidim, he developed a close relationship with Rabbi Levi Yitzchok Bender, as well as elder Breslovers of the previous generation such as Rabbi Shmuel Shapira and Hirsh Leib Lippel.
Allegations that Rabbi Berland has committed sexual offenses against female followers have been published. Several women reported that the rabbi sexually harassed or raped them. The allegations came to light in 2012, when the newspaper Israel Hayom reported an incident in which one of Berland's students encountered him at home, standing beside a naked woman. His supporters expressed anger over the report, and the person who leaked the story to the media was later violently attacked.
After the police opened an investigation, Berland immediately fled Israel, and spent time in the United States, Italy, and Switzerland. He then left for Morocco, settling in Marrakesh. Berland lived in Marrakesh for seven months, and was welcomed by the small Moroccan Jewish community. He intended to establish a kehilla in Marrakesh based on the Shuvu Banim yeshiva, and planned on building a community center, educational institutions, and apartments for his followers. Thousands of his followers began travelling to Marrakesh to celebrate holidays and commemorate events with him, and some took up residency there to stay with him. In November 2013, Berland and his students were ordered to leave Morocco after King Mohammed VI personally ordered their expulsion from the country. According to news reports, a Moroccan newspaper had published an article profiling the rabbi and mentioning the circumstances in which he fled Israel, and the king ordered Berland's expulsion after reading the article. Berland's followers claimed that the king was merely concerned for their safety, as they were Hasidic Jews living in a Muslim country. Berland is thought to have left Morocco for Cairo, Egypt. He reportedly bought tickets for various destinations to confuse pursuers, considered between taking a flight to Zimbabwe or Venezuela, and in the end chose Zimbabwe. From there, he allegedly took a flight to Johannesburg, South Africa, where he was taken in by a relative.
- "Rabbi Eliezer Berland shlit"a". Shuvu Bonim. 1999. Retrieved 23 October 2010.
- "Information About Vaad Olami D'Chasedai Breslov (World Committee of Breslov Chassidim)". Friends of Breslov Boston. Retrieved 23 October 2010.
- "Shuvu Banim: Portrait of Perilous Extremism". Keshev.org. November 1999. p. 6. Retrieved 6 February 2011.
- Ettinger, Yair (6 October 2006). "Bratslav's Tower of Babel". Haaretz. Retrieved 23 October 2010.
- Rotem, Tamar (22 March 2013). "What does it take for a woman to accuse her rabbi of sexual harassment?". Haaretz. Retrieved 8 November 2013.
- Rabbi accused of sex-abuse ordered out of Morocco - Israel Hayom.
- גלהר, ארי (9 April 2013). "הרב אליעזר ברלנד ברח למרוקו". מעריב. Retrieved 8 November 2013.
- Morocco expels fugitive Israeli rabbi - Haaretz
- שטרנהרץ, נחמן. "עקב הוראות השלטון: הרב אליעזר ברלנד עזב את מרוקו". כיכר השבת. Retrieved 8 November 2013.