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30 years of freedom commemorated by the Czech and German Embassy in Baku

To commemorate the 30th anniversary of freedom brought to Germans, Czechs and Slovaks by the fall of the Berlin Wall and the Velvet Revolution in Czechoslovakia, the Embassies of the Czech Republic and Germany in Baku organised a series of lectures in November 2019, accompanied by exhibitions of photographs documenting the revolutionary events of 1989.

On 11 November, the Ambassador of the Federal Republic of Germany, H.E. Wolfgang Manig and the Ambassador of the Czech Republic, H.E. Milan Ekert opened the joint „30 Years of Freedom” commemoration at the historical German cultural center in Baku known as the Kapellhaus. In their introductory speeches, the Ambassadors highlighted the peaceful character of the transition from one party rule in East Germany and Czechoslovakia and pointed out that the unifying messages of the 1989 revolutions are still valid today. The programme continued by a lecture by Dr. Oldřich Tůma from the Institute of Contemporary History (ICH) at the Czech Academy of Sciences on the transnational aspects of the Czechoslovak 1989 events and a presentation of photographic material from 1989, including photos documenting the exodus of East Germans through the West German Embassy in Prague and a series of pictures by the Czechoslovak Press Agency presented by the Czech Centres under the title „Moments of the Velvet Revolution“. After a discussion moderated by Dr. Tahmina Aslanova from the Baku State University (BSU) Faculty of History, some 60 guests, including students of history from the BSU, had the opportunity to explore the photographic material from 1989 at exhibitions panels provided by the German and Czech Embassy. The Czech part of the exhibition, covering the period from the 1988 street protests in Prague until the departure of Soviet troops from Czechoslovakia, includes an introductory text by Jiří Suk (ICH) and 40 photos selected by photographer Dana Kyndrová.

For 13 – 20 November, both exhibitions moved to the ADA University in Baku where they provided a visual backdrop to a lecture by Prof. Oliver Reisner (Ilia State University, Tbilisi) on the „Wind of Change“ in East Europe in the late 1980s as well as for a presentation on the Velvet Revolution on 18 November, organised by students from the Czech Republic and Slovakia for their classmates.

Information about further events to take place at the Kapellhaus on 22-24 November are available at the poster below.

30 Years of Freedom

30 Years of Freedom




30 Years of Freedom at Kapellhaus and ADA, November 2019