A time of change: German reunification made a statement for peace and friendship worldwide.
3 October 1990
On 3 October 1990, after 45 years of division, East and West Germany officially became one nation again. The division had come about after the Second World War: In 1945 Germany was initially divided into four sectors that were administered by the United States, Great Britain, France and the Soviet Union. Owing to the ideological differences among the Allies, the country was later split into West Germany and East Germany. In 1952 the latter closed its borders to the West and in 1961 built a wall through the city of Berlin.
9 November 1989
Walking a few steps from East to West: Something that today, almost 30 years later, is quite normal made people cry tears of joy during the night of 9/10 November 1989. After the Central Committee Secretary for Information, Günter Schabowski, announced that every East German citizen would be entitled to receive a visa to travel to the West from the following morning, thousands of East Berlin residents gathered at the city’s crossing points. Around 11.30 p.m. the officers on duty at the Bornholmer Strasse crossing point in Berlin’s Wedding district yielded to the pressure from the populace and opened the border. The Iron Curtain dividing East and West had fallen.
Scorpions – Wind of Change
No other Rock song encapsulates the mood at the end of the Cold War more than “Wind of Change” by the German band Scorpions. It became an anthem of East-West rapprochement and the fall of the Berlin Wall.
“Two Plus Four” conference
The Two Plus Four Agreement paved the way for reunification. The “Two” were the Federal Republic of Germany and the German Democratic Republic (represented by Hans-Dietrich Genscher and Markus Meckel). The “Four” were the Soviet Union (Eduard Schewardnadse), France (Roland Dumas), Great Britain (Douglas Hurd) and the USA (James Baker).
David Bowie concert ends in riot
On June 5, 1987, thousands of fans went to the concert of British music star David Bowie in front of the Reichstag Building in West Berlin. But in the eastern part of the city, just a few metres away on the other side of the Wall, hundreds of young people gathered to listen to the music and call for the Wall to be demolished. They were pushed back by the People’s Police, and a riot resulted.