November 4, 2009 / 2:12 PM / 8 years ago

TIMELINE: East Germany-From wartime ashes to unity

(Reuters) - Following is timeline of East Germany which united with the West just months after the fall of the Berlin Wall in November 1989.

May 8, 1945 - Nazi Germany capitulates, country divided into

occupation zones.

October 7, 1949 - German Democratic Republic founded.

June 17, 1953 - Soviet troops quell workers' uprising.

January 18, 1956 - East German army established, country joins Warsaw Pact soon after.

August 13, 1961 - Berlin Wall goes up.

March 19, 1970 - East and West German leaders meet for first

time in Erfurt, East Germany.

May 3, 1971 - Erich Honecker replaces Walter Ulbricht as party chief.

December 21, 1972 - Basic Treaty signed between East and West Germany, paving way for diplomatic recognition.

November 16, 1976 - Poet and singer Wolf Biermann stripped of citizenship, prompting many artists to emigrate in disgust.

September 7, 1987 - Honecker visits West Germany.

January 17, 1988 - Demonstration at official march sparks major crackdown on dissent.

May 7, 1989 - Communists and allies score nearly 99 per cent

in local elections later shown to have been rigged.

July/August 1989 - Would-be emigrants pack West German embassies across East Europe to seek exit papers.

September 10, 1989 - Hungary opens its border to Austria, allowing thousands of East Germans to reach West.

October 18, 1989 - After unrest across country, including huge demonstrations in the city of Leipzig, and continued exodus, Honecker quits. Egon Krenz replaces him.

November 9, 1989 - Berlin Wall opened.

March 18, 1990 - East Germany's first free elections. Voters

opt for center right pro-unity government.

July 1, 1990 - East and West Germany merge economies, East adopts deutschemark as currency.

September 12, 1990 - World War Two allies and two German states sign treaty restoring sovereignty to future united Germany.

October 3, 1990 - East Germany unites with West Germany.

Writing by David Cutler, London Editorial Reference Unit; editing by Ralph Boulton

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