October 3 - Day of German Unity

Brandenburg Gate, symbol of German Unity

Celebrating German Unity

Each year on October 3, Germany marks the day in 1990 when East and West Germany became one Federal Republic of Germany. The peaceful unification of Germany after decades of division would not have been possible without the steadfast support of our American friends.

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Federal President Gauck -- official portrait

Message From Federal President Gauck for the Day of German Unity 2016

"On the Day of German Unity we remember all that we have achieved in the last few years of our history. We celebrate the desire for freedom voiced by the people in Leipzig, Plauen, Berlin and many other towns and cities in the GDR."

Foreign Minister Steinmeier

Message from Foreign Minister Steinmeier on the Day of German Unity 2016

"The fall of the Berlin Wall, the reunification of Germany and the overcoming of the division of Europe into East and West: without a doubt, these events marked a historic watershed whose impact stretched far beyond Germany’s borders."

Palace of the Republic inEast Berlin

Choosing October 3 as the Day of German Unity

On August 23, 1990, the first freely elected East German parliament voted on the date for German unification, settling on October 3 after weeks of debate within the governing coalition and an intense debate into the wee hours of the morning.

"Two plus Four" conference in Bonn

Reunification

Following the peaceful revolution in East Germany in 1989, negotiations about the reunification treaty commenced in Berlin in the summer of 1990. Eventually, on October 3, 1990, East Germany acceded to the territory of the Federal Republic of Germany.

Helmut Kohl © picture-alliance/dpa

From the Fall of the Wall to German Unity - A Timeline

Images of happy people from East and West embracing and celebrating on and around the Berlin Wall that night seem to tell the whole story about the triumph over division and oppression and the German people's yearning to be united.

Chancellor Bush and President Bush (c) bpa/Lothar Schaack

Historic Phone Call Between Friends

On the afternoon of October 3, 1990, after a night of joyous celebrating united Germany, Chancellor Helmut Kohl received a phone call from his friend and fellow statesman President George H. W. Bush in Washington.

Day of German Unity

Celebrating the Day of German Unity