9th November 2014 marks the 25th anniversary of the fall of the Berlin Wall. Check out our illustrated timeline for all you need to know about the (literal) rise and fall of this famous barricade.
After World War II, Berlin divides into four sectors: an American, British and French sector in the West and a Soviet sector in the East.
13 August 1961
The border between East and West Berlin closes despite heavy protests. Soldiers begin to build the wall, which starts as light fencing and barbed wire but gradually becomes a complex fortification with watchtowers and gunned patrolmen.
26 June 1963
Former United States President John F. Kennedy makes a speech to more than 450,000 Berliners in Rudolph Wilde Square, vowing to protect the people of West Berlin (“Ich bin ein Berliner”).
East and West Germany begin to establish formal diplomatic ties again. By December 1963, West Berliners could visit East Berlin for the first time in two years. Berlin holds a so-called “Call to Arms” to celebrate the 25th anniversary of the building of the Wall, rallying children and soldiers.
4 November 1989
A million people attend a pro-democracy demonstration in Alexanderplatz, East Berlin, forcing the East German government to resign days later.
9 November 1989
Border guards in East Berlin stand back as thousands pour into West Berlin; the Wall is pulled down in celebration.
East and West are formally reunited on 3rd October 1990. In the 28 years of the Berlin Wall, more than 200 people have died trying to cross over. Many segments of the wall have been given to various institutions around the world, including museums, university and governmental buildings and public spaces. Others have, of course, ended up as souvenirs in giftshops around Berlin.
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