Germany prepares to mark 30 years since the Berlin Wall's fall Pictures
As Germany prepares to celebrate the fall of the Berlin Wall on November 9, several colourful art installations including photo and video exhibitions have already been set up in Berlin.The historic event carries a symbolic weight since it marks the beginning of the end of the Cold War, which finally drew to a close 28 years ago, after a former senior East German Communist official accidentally announced the wall’s opening. A Skynet made of 30,000 ribbons that bear aloft the wishes, hopes, and memories of 30,000 people will be on display from November 4 to 10, 2019.
The wall’s fall happened on November 9, 1989, when the spokesman of the Soviet bloc state, Guenter Schabowski, unexpectedly declared that every citizen could leave East Germany through border crossings immediately, as he answered a journalist’s question regarding the travel rules.The unconfirmed announcement resulted in thousands of East Berliners breaching the wall and passing into the West, despite then-leader Erich Honecker saying in the same year that the Wall would stand at least 50 years more. When the German Democratic Republic began inserting barbed wires and concrete blocks between the West and East on August 13, 1961, its official line was to prevent efforts to undermine the socialist state under Soviet control. The wall would block fascists from West Germany entering the East, the Communist government of the German Democratic Republic said.
In fact, some three million people fled to the West between 1945 and 1961, and the number of skilled citizens who wanted to leave the East Germany was increasing. At least 1,065 people were killed while trying to flee East Germany. However, despite the fall of the wall and economic progress in the East, a majority of Germans in the former communist area feel like second-class citizens, according to a recent government report. At this year’s celebrations, leaders of former Cold War powers will be absent from anniversary festivities, as US President Donald Trump's America First, Britain's Brexit and Russia's resurgence put a strain on ties.
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