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1987

CPSU leader Mikhail Gorbachev wants to reform the Soviet Union. At a meeting of the Warsaw Pact leaders in East Berlin, his plans cause some grumbling behind the scenes. While Gorbachev brings a breath of fresh air to the meeting, GDR leader Erich Honecker dreads his Soviet visitor’s zest for reform.

The Minister-President of the Federal State of Schleswig-Holstein, Uwe Barschel (CDU), is forced to resign after the so-called “Waterkant-Gate Affair“. For his election campaign, Barschel had hired a shady media adviser who spread rumours about the private life of the Social Democratic top candidate Björn Engholm. The smear campaign is publicised by the news magazine “Spiegel“ on the day preceding the state elections. Barschel asserts his innocence before stepping down and, eventually, going into hiding. He is found dead by journalists in the bath tub of a hotel room in Geneva. The circumstances of his death remain unclear.

What else happened?

Despite great protest, a census is carried out in West Germany.

GDR head of state Erich Honecker is received by Chancellor Helmut Kohl on a state visit to the Federal Republic of Germany.

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