The Fall Of The Berlin Wall, 25 Years Later — PHOTOS

Nov. 9 marks the 25th anniversary of the fall of the Berlin Wall — the concrete barrier that separated East Berlin from West Berlin and became the icon of the Cold War for nearly 30 years. Built in 1961, the wall visually symbolized the Cold War divide between the Western and Eastern Bloc countries, the latter of which were under the Soviet Union's control. Although the beginning of the end of the Cold War sparked in Poland, the demise of the Berlin Wall in the then-known German Democratic Republic was perhaps the most pivotal moment of the East's defeat.

East and West Germany didn't unite until 1990, when the wall was officially dismantled, but Nov. 9 marks the day residents of East Berlin, in determined yet peaceful protest, entered freely into West Berlin for the first time. To commemorate the historic event, hundreds of thousands of Germans and foreigners alike traveled to Berlin this weekend to view the remnants of the wall.

German Chancellor Angela Merkel, born and raised in East Germany, spoke about the significance of the Berlin Wall in her weekly address on Saturday. "It was a day that showed us the yearning for freedom cannot be forever suppressed," Merkel said in Berlin, as quoted by Reuters.

The German chancellor continued:

During the course of 1989 more and more East Germans lost their fears of the state's repression and chicanery, and went out on the streets. There was no turning back then. It is thanks to their courage the Wall was opened.

Here are some scenes from the Berlin Wall over the years...

Then — Early 1960s

1970s

1980s

Now

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Images: Wikimedia Commons, Getty Images