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Daily History

December 22, 1989 – The Brandenburg Gate between East and West Berlin is opened for the first time in nearly thirty years


Brandenburg Gate Reopens

Brandenburg Gate Reopens

Berlin, the capital city of Germany, was divided following World War II.

With the development of the Cold War, tensions began to increase between the Soviet Union which controlled the East, and the western allies which controlled West Berlin.

The border between East and West Germany was closed in 1952, but people continued to defect from East Germany via West Berlin.

On 13 August 1961, construction commenced on a wall to separate the East and Western halves of Berlin.

Ultimately, the wall included over 300 watchtowers, 106km of concrete and 66.5km of wire fencing completely surrounding West Berlin and preventing any access from East Germany.

Even the famous landmark, the Brandenburg Gate, commissioned by Friedrich Wilhelm II in 1791 to represent peace, was incorporated into the wall.

The wall remained as a barrier between East and West until 1989, when the collapse of communism led to its fall.

On 9 November 1989, an international peace conference began in East Berlin.

At the conclusion of the peace conference, greater freedom of travel was announced for people of the German Democratic Republic.

At midnight, the East German government allowed gates along the Wall to be opened after hundreds of people converged on crossing points.

Many people then took to the wall with hammers and chisels, dismantling it piece by piece.

On 22 December 1989, the Brandenburg Gate was once again opened, effectively ending the division of East and West Germany

About Craig Hill

Teacher and Writer. Writing has been cited in New York Times, BBC, Fox News, Aljazeera, Philippines Star, South China Morning Post, National Interest, news.com.au, Wikipedia and others.

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