Protests, celebrations as Germany marks reunification anniversary

CCTV News

Protests mixed with celebrations in Germany to make 26 years since reunification, but it was Chancellor Angela Merkel that felt the brunt of the crowd's anger. Protests mixed with celebrations in Germany to make 26 years since reunification, but it was Chancellor Angela Merkel that felt the brunt of the crowd’s anger.

Protests mixed with celebrations in Germany to make 26 years since reunification, but it was Chancellor Angela Merkel that felt the brunt of the crowd’s anger.

CCTV’s Guy Henderson reports.

Follow Guy Henderson on Twitter @guyhendersonde

Protests, celebrations as Germany marks reunification anniversary

Protests, celebrations as Germany marks reunification anniversary

Protest mixed with celebrations in Germany to make 26 years since reunification, but it was chancellor Angela Merkel that felt the brunt of the crowd's anger.

The jeers were perhaps predictable. Chancellor Angela Merkel observed German Unity Day in a city where there are deep divisions over her open-door immigration policy. Dresden is the cradle of a German anti-Islam movement called PEGIDA. Protesters chanted. “Merkel must go!”

In the final year of her third term Merkel’s popularity has tumbled to a five-year low. She is especially unpopular here in the German state of Saxony-where there has been a surge in right-wing nationalism.

Twenty-six years since reunification, the divisions that still exist between East and West have been aggravated in recent months. It’s left Chancellor Angela Merkel trying to navigate the most challenging political environment than at any time since then.

Born in the West, but raised an “Ostie” – slang for East German – Merkel embodies the ideal she asked all Germans to celebrate today.

“For me personally, and for most of the German people, this is still a day of joy and gratitude. But it is also a day on which we recognize that there are new problems – that there is new work to be done. I hope that we can solve those problems together, with mutual respect and acceptance of different political views,” said German Chancellor Angela Merkel.

Germans embraced a similar message when the country reunified in 1990. Many had doubted they would move on soon after the Berlin Wall came down.