GERMANY HOLDS LOW-KEY 30TH ANNIVERSARY OF REUNIFICATION
Germany is marking the 30th anniversary of its reunification on Saturday, drawing a generally positive picture of the progress made in knitting together east and west amid celebrations that are low-key because of the coronavirus pandemic.
Germany was reunited on Oct. 3, 1990, after four decades of Cold War division. East Germany joined the western federal republic less than a year after the east’s communist rulers — under pressure from growing protests — opened the Berlin Wall and the rest of the highly fortified border between the two states, the Associated Press (AP) reported on October 3, 2020.
While much progress has been made since then, economic and other differences between the west and the less-prosperous east still persist. A long-lasting trend of more people leaving the east than moving there has finally halted in recent years.
“We have achieved a lot in these 30 years,” Chancellor Angela Merkel, who grew up in the east, told Germany’s parliament this week. “We have succeeded in significantly reducing the differences in living conditions between eastern and western Germany.” She added: “But structural differences remain. Further efforts are necessary.”