Demonstration by the Polish trade union Solidarnosc in the pilgrimage city of Tschenstochau (Poland). The illegal trade union Solidarnosc grew into a mass movement that could no longer be stopped.
источник: AP Photo

Freedom for those who think differently

Эта статья еще не переведена русский.

The official memorial demonstration in honour of Rosa Luxemburg and Karl Liebknecht took place in East Berlin on 17 January 1988. People who wanted to leave the country and members of the opposition demonstrated together under the motto: freedom for those who think differently. This kind of action was a crime in the GDR; over a hundred demonstrators were arrested.

The state took the opportunity for another blow against civil rights activists, arresting prominent figures from the East Berlin opposition a few days after the demonstration. They had spoken out in public on behalf of the prisoners and passed on information showing the GDR in a critical light to West Germany.

At the state memorial demonstration for Rosa Luxemburg and Karl Liebknecht at Frankfurter Tor (East Berlin), 17 January 1988. A West German television crew managed to film protesting demonstrators, despite Stasi attempts to block the view by holding up banners.
источник: Robert-Havemann-Gesellschaft/Berhard Freutel
A banner confiscated at the LuxemburgLiebknecht demonstration in East Berlin on 17 January 1988: “Freedom is always the freedom of those who think differently. Rosa Luxemburg”. The Stasi photographed this evidence of what they saw as subversive activities.
источник: Robert-Havemann-Gesellschaft/BStU-Kopie
Solidarität am Checkpoint Charlie (West-Berlin) am 31. Januar 1988. An diesem Grenzübergang in der Friedrichstraße demonstrieren Westberliner für die Freilassung der in Ost-Berlin verhafteten Bürgerrechtler.
источник: Der Bundesbeauftragte für Unterlagen des ehemaligen Staatssicherheitsdienstes der DDR
The singer-songwriter Stephan Krawczyk reached audiences well beyond the opposition circles, performing caustic satirical shows along with the director Freya Klier. The two were among those arrested in January 1988. The West German news magazine Der Spiegel, 1 February 1988.
источник: Der Spiegel, 1.2.1988
Vera Wollenberger (at the microphone) was arrested for attempting to take part in the Luxemburg Liebknecht demonstration with her own placard. She was sentenced to six months’ imprisonment for “attempted formation of a mob” and deported to Britain in February 1988.
источник: Robert-Havemann-Gesellschaft
Regina and Wolfgang Templin, active civil rights campaigners, at home in Pankow, Berlin in the 1980s. They worked towards networking the opposition with people who wanted to leave the country. After their expulsion to West Germany they were among the most important supporters of the East German opposition.
источник: Robert-Havemann-Gesellschaft/Tina Bara
Bärbel Bohley and Werner Fischer, members of the opposition Initiative for Peace and Human Rights, were pressured to leave the GDR after their arrest. Once they arrived in the West they announced they wanted to return as soon as possible, to carry on working for change.
источник: AP-Photo/M. Wienhoefer
Ralf Hirsch made highly effective use of the Western media for a number of years as a spokesperson for the GDR opposition, and was arrested by the Stasi in January 1988. The Green Party politician Petra Kelly (r.), one of the most important supporters of the East German opposition, welcomed Hirsch (l.) to West Germany after he was deported.
источник: AP-Photo/JE
[Translate to Russisch:] Viele Menschen protestieren in der ganzen DDR gegen die Verhaftungen. Flugblätter werden auf Straßen verteilt, in Briefkästen gesteckt oder an Litfaßsäulen geklebt. Hunderte Personen werden festgenommen, viele von ihnen verurteilt oder in die Bundesrepublik abgeschoben. In Wurzen und Dresden verbreitetes Flugblatt.
[Translate to Russisch:] Viele Menschen protestieren in der ganzen DDR gegen die Verhaftungen. Flugblätter werden auf Straßen verteilt, in Briefkästen gesteckt oder an Litfaßsäulen geklebt. Hunderte Personen werden festgenommen, viele von ihnen verurteilt oder in die Bundesrepublik abgeschoben. In Berlin-Friedrichshain von der Staatssicherheit fotografierter und entfernter Anschlag.
источник: Bundesbeauftragter für die Unterlagen des Staatssicherheitsdienstes der ehemaligen DDR
[Translate to Russisch:] Viele Menschen protestieren in der ganzen DDR gegen die Verhaftungen. Flugblätter werden auf Straßen verteilt, in Briefkästen gesteckt oder an Litfaßsäulen geklebt. Hunderte Personen werden festgenommen, viele von ihnen verurteilt oder in die Bundesrepublik abgeschoben. In Berlin-Friedrichshain von der Staatssicherheit fotografierter und entfernter Anschlag.
источник: Bundesbeauftragter für die Unterlagen des Staatssicherheitsdienstes der ehemaligen DDR

There were solidarity campaigns and vigils all over the country. On top of this, the GDR government was faced with a wave of protest from many countries in the West. In response, it gave the arrested activists the choice of either up to twelve years in prison or leaving the country. Under such huge pressure, most of the prisoners decided to emigrate from the GDR. This meant the opposition lost a number of key players.

Notes on telephone information from 29 January 1988. A contact telephone in East Berlin was staffed almost around the clock, receiving news of solidarity actions for the prisoners from all over the GDR. People met up in churches to protest in many towns and villages.
источник: Robert-Havemann-Gesellschaft
According to section 99 of the East German penal code, contacts to other countries could be subject to criminal prosecution. In January 1988 opposition activists were arrested and charged for their contacts to the West, particularly to the writer Jürgen Fuchs and the journalist Roland Jahn.
источник: Robert-Havemann-Gesellschaft
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