Germany celebrates 30th anniversary of Berlin Wall’s fall

By Michael Nienaber

BERLIN, Nov 9 (Reuters) – Germany on Saturday marked the 30th anniversary of the autumn of the Berlin Wall that separated East and West Germany, with President Frank-Walter Steinmeier thanking Jap European neighbours for enabling a peaceable revolution.

The toppling of the wall, which had divided the Communist-ruled East and the capitalist West in Berlin for almost three a long time and have become a potent image of the Chilly Struggle, was adopted a 12 months later by the reunification of Germany in 1990.

“Along with our mates, we bear in mind with deep gratitude the occasions 30 years in the past,” Steinmeier stated throughout a ceremony on the Bernauer Strasse Berlin Wall Memorial, which was additionally attended by Chancellor Angela Merkel and heads of state from Poland, Hungary, Slovakia and the Czech Republic.

“With out the braveness and the need to freedom of the Poles and Hungarians, the Czechs and Slovaks, the peaceable revolutions in Jap Europe and Germany’s reunification wouldn’t have been potential,” Steinmeier stated.

In the course of the ceremony, Steinmeier and the presidents of Poland, Hungary, Slovakia and the Czech Republic positioned roses in a small hole within the stays of the wall on the memorial.

In August 1989, Hungarian border guards for the primary time allowed folks from East Germany to cross freely into Austria, paving the best way for the autumn of the Berlin Wall three months later and with it the top of the Iron Curtain.

Steinmeier identified, nevertheless, that the historic occasion didn’t mark the “finish of historical past” as U.S. historian Francis Fukuyama said. The wrestle of political techniques had continued and the long run was extra unsure than ever earlier than, he added.

“Liberal democracy is being challenged and questioned,” Steinmeier stated. That is why Germany and its European allies needed to battle on daily basis for a peaceable and united Europe with every nation having to do its half to beat variations, he added.

His message was echoed by Merkel in a quick speech throughout a commemorative service on the memorial’s chapel.

“The values ​on which Europe is based — freedom, democracy, equality, the rule of legislation, respect for human rights — are something however self-evident. They usually must be crammed with stay and have to be defended time and again,” she stated.

The festivities in Berlin had been resulting from culminate with a celebration on the Brandenburg Gate within the night that includes the Staatskapelle Berlin orchestra directed by Daniel Barenboim and digital music with techno DJ legend WestBam. (Enhancing by Helen Popper)

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