Thursday, June 11, 2009

East German archives still busy

Requests to see Stasi files unabated 20 years on

Marianne Birthler, who manages the miles of intelligence files communist East Germany kept on its own citizens and many Westerners, told reporters that interest in the records had anything but abated two decades on.

"More than 100,000 applications to look at files were submitted in 2007, somewhat fewer last year with 87,000, but demand rose again in the first months of 2009" at a rate of about 10,000 per month, she said.

"It could be related to the (20th) anniversary year. At the same time, we have observed time and again that many people are only asking to see their files now because they have apparently needed time to prepare themselves to confront their pasts."

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