Protest against Egon Krenz being installed as chairman of the State Council outside the State Council building in East Berlin, 24 October 1989.
Source: picture-alliance/dpa/Wolfgang Kumm

Press conferences

Günter Schabowski, a member of the SED Politburo, read aloud a new travel regulation towards the end of a press conference on 9 November 1989. His announcement caused some confusion, as he referred only to “permanent departure”, in other words “leaving the republic”. But the text also contained a section on visits to the West, which were now to be possible for all East Germans. Schabowski also announced that the regulation was valid “with immediate effect” and “without delay”.
Source: Bundesarchiv/183-1989-1109-030/Thomas Lehmann
Press conference of the New Forum movement on the morning of 9 November 1989, in the back yard of founding member Bärbel Bohley (m.). Only the previous day, the state had accepted New Forum’s application for official authorisation. Although this had been a demand at demonstrations across the country for weeks, the news was drowned out by the excitement of the fall of the Berlin Wall.
Source: Andreas Schoelzel
The information Günter Schabowski gave at the press conference was not quite clear. Nevertheless, the West German news programme Tagesschau reported an hour later: “GDR opens border”. But the border was still closed. Thousands of people gathered at the crossing points in Berlin, shouting: “Open the gate! Open the gate!” The mass pressure left the border guards no other option. By two minutes after midnight all the border crossings inside the city were open.
Source: picture-alliance/dpa/Wolfgang Kumm
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