Politics, West, East

Controversial session of the Bundestag in West Berlin

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The Bundestag holds session in West Berlin, causing huge disruptions to transit traffic and threatening gestures from the Soviets. They do not view West Berlin as part of the Federal Republic. Soviet jets fly low over the city, disturbing the session.

The GDR prohibits the members of the Bundestag from passing through its territory and temporarily suspends all transit traffic, claiming the autobahn is needed for military manoeuvres. Drivers are forced to wait in queues for 20 hours. The members of the Bundestag travel to West Berlin by plane and the session is held in the Kongresshalle conference venue in Tiergarten, which today houses the Haus der Kulturen der Welt.

The Western allies lodge an objection with the West German Federal Government and veto future sessions of the Bundestag in West Berlin. In the 1971 Berlin Four Power Agreement, the Western allies pledge to allow no further plenary sessions of the Bundestag in Berlin. It will be another 25 years before German MPs hold session there again – after the fall of the Wall.


  • Berlin-West, Haus der Kulturen der Welt (damals Kongresshalle)