Quotes about the Berlin Wall anniversary
By The Associated Press
A selection of comments from ceremonies, remembrances of the 20th anniversary of the collapse of the Berlin Wall.
- "Sometimes people forget today how many could not leave (the country) for years, how many sat in prisons ... before the joy of freedom came, many people suffered." - German Chancellor Angela Merkel.
"My clairvoyant skills and those of (then-Chancellor Helmut) Kohl were up to nothing then. We did not think the wall would fall so fast." - former Soviet leader Mikhail Gorbachev at a news conference.
- "Now, we have to turn our attention to the challenges of the 21st century. A wall, a physical wall, may have come down but there are other walls that exist that we have to overcome and we will be working together to accomplish that." - U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton.
- "The wall that had imprisoned half a city, half a country, half a continent, half a world for nearly a third of a century was swept away by the greatest force of all - the unbreakable spirit of men and women who dared to dream in the darkness, who knew that while force has the temporary power to dictate, it can never ultimately decide." - British Prime Minister Gordon Brown.
"We praise the strength, the patience and the longing of the people who did not stop thinking of freedom and democracy in these dark times" - Joachim Gauck, former East German pastor who later oversaw the files of the former secret police, the Stasi.
- "I don't cry easily, but there have been three moments in my life, when I have followed world history on the TV and cried. When the Wall fell and was torn down, I was completely excited, emotionally stirred and simply just happy in the moment." - German Foreign Minister Guido Westerwelle.
- "The remembrance of Nov. 9, 1989, not to mention the remembrance of the horrific proceedings of the (Kristallnacht) pogrom on Nov. 9, 1938, unmistakably teaches us: Walls - whether real or in the heads and hearts of people - walls do not solve any problems." - Archbishop Robert Zollitsch, head of Germany's Bishop's Conference.
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