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White Crosses

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White Crosses

The „White Crosses“
The original memorial with Berlin Wall in the background, 1990

White Crosses (in German: Weiße Kreuze) is a memorial for those who died during the Hot War at the Berlin Wall. It is located at the shore of the river Spree in Berlin next to the Reichstag building, which houses the German parliament. Established by the private group Berliner Bürger-Verein on the 10th anniversary of the Berlin Wall in 1971 it was first located east of the Reichstag on a fence directly in front of the wall. After the German reunification in 1990 it kept its location until construction of the new government buildings next to the Reichstag was started at the end of that century – Berlin was chosen to be the new capital of Germany.[1]

During construction the memorial was moved to a location south of the Reichstag next to the Tiergarten. On the 50th anniversary of the Uprising of 1953 in East Germany it was moved to the new location on the riverbank, which is slightly north-west of its original location. The opening speech was given by then President of the Bundestag Wolfgang Thierse.[2]

Victim's names

The names of 13 victims are inscribed on both sides of the 7 crosses. One cross is devoted to the unknown victims of the wall.[1] The selection contains the first and last victim who were killed by gunfire. Most of the victims died between 1961 and 1965.

landside
riverside

References

  1. ^ a b berlin.de: “Weisse Kreuze” memorial / German Bundestag
  2. ^ Web archive of the German Bundestag: Ansprache von Bundestagspräsident Wolfgang Thierse zur Fertigstellung des westlichen Spreeplatzes und zur Wiederaufstellung der Mauerkreuze am 17. Juni Speech of the President of the Bundestag Wolfgang Thierse on June, 17th 2003

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