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|German Democratic Republic|
|Deutsche Demokratische Republik|
|Member of the Warsaw Pact|
Proletarier aller Länder, vereinigt Euch!
English: Workers of the world, unite!
Auferstanden aus Ruinen
"Risen from Ruins"
The German Democratic Republic in 1990
Russian (de facto)
|Religion||None (state atheism)|
Federal Marxist–Leninist one-party socialist state (1949-1952)
Unitary Marxist–Leninist one-party socialist state (1952-Nov. 1989)
Unitary Parliamentary republic (Nov. 1989-Oct. 1990)
|Head of State|
|•||1949–1960||Wilhelm Pieck (first)|
|•||1990||Sabine Berg.-Pohl (last)|
|Head of Government|
|•||1949–1964||Otto Grotewohl (first)|
|•||1990||Lothar de Maizière (last)|
|Historical era||Cold War|
|•||Constitution adopted||7 October 1949|
|•||Uprising of 1953||16 June 1953|
|•||Berlin Crisis||4 June 1961|
|•||Peaceful Revolution||13 October 1989|
|•||Final Settlement||12 September 1990|
|•||Reunification||3 October 1990|
|•||1990||108,333 km² (41,828 sq mi)|
|Density||148.7 /km² (385.2 /sq mi)|
1949–1964: Deutsche Mark
1964–1967: Mark der Deutschen Notenbank,
Mark der DDR
(Three different names for the same currency)
(from 1 July 1990)
|Today part of||Germany|
The initial flag of East Germany adopted in 1948 was identical to that of West Germany. In 1959, the East German government issued a new version of the flag bearing the national emblem, serving to distinguish East from West.
^a Dissolved by the Volkskammer on 8 December 1958.
^b Population statistics according to Statistisches Bundesamt.
^c Although .dd was reserved as corresponding ISO code for East Germany, it was not entered to the root before the country was reunited with the west.
East Germany, formally the German Democratic Republic or GDR (German: Deutsche Demokratische Republik [ˈdɔʏtʃə demoˈkʀaːtɪʃə ʀepuˈbliːk]), was an Eastern Bloc state during the Cold War period. From 1949 to 1990, it administered the region of Germany that was occupied by Soviet forces at the end of World War II—the Soviet Occupation Zone of the Potsdam Agreement, bounded on the east by the Oder–Neisse line. The Soviet zone surrounded West Berlin, but did not include it; as a result, West Berlin remained outside the jurisdiction of the GDR. The German Democratic Republic was established in the Soviet Zone, while the Federal Republic was established in the three western zones. East Germany was a satellite state of the Soviet Union. Soviet occupation authorities began transferring administrative responsibility to German communist leaders in 1948, and the GDR began to function as a state on 7 October 1949. Soviet forces, however, remained in the country throughout the Cold War. Until 1989, the GDR was governed by the Socialist Unity Party (SED), though other parties nominally participated in its alliance organisation, the National Front of Democratic Germany.
The economy was centrally planned, and increasingly state-owned. Prices of basic goods and services were set by central government planners, rather than rising and falling through supply and demand. Although the GDR had to pay substantial war reparations to the USSR, it became the most successful economy in the Eastern Bloc. Nonetheless it did not match the economic growth of West Germany. Emigration to the West was a significant problem—as many of the emigrants were well-educated young people, it further weakened the state economically. The government fortified its western borders and, in 1961, built the Berlin Wall. Many people attempting to flee were killed by border guards or booby traps, such as landmines.
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