East Germany Expels Four More Dissidents
HELMSTEDT, West Germany (AP) _ Four more East Germans arrested in a crackdown on dissidents last month have been expelled to West Germany, officials said Thursday.
Border police identified two as Steffan Telchow and Sven Ertel, both 24, and said they arrived at the Helmstedt border crossing late Wednesday. Telchow and Ertel were arrested on Jan. 20 for going on a hunger strike in East Berlin to support a dissident protest.
Peter Wiswede, 23, and Holger Knoth, 24, were taken on Wednesday to the refugee center at Giessen, 35 miles north of Frankfurt, after arriving in West Germany by train, a spokesman for the center said. No details of their arrests were given.
Police arrested more than 100 dissidents who demonstrated for human rights and democracy at an official East Berlin rally Jan. 17 led by Communist Party chief Erich Honecker.
More than 60 have been sent to West Germany. Among them are Vera Wollenberger, who arrived Tuesday with her husband and two children. Mrs. Wollenberger, 35, helped found a human rights group linked to Protestant churches.
Others deported include songwriter and singer Stephan Krawczyk and his wife, theater director Freya Klier. She said they were given the choice of expulsion or prison.
In another development, Mayor Eberhard Diepgen of West Berlin said Honecker had agreed to let visitors from the city’s western zone stay overnight in East Berlin.
Many West Berliners have relatives and friends in the East, but overnight visits have not been allowed since Communist authorities built the Berlin Wall in August 1961.
Diepgen made the announcement after returning from a meeting with Honecker in East Berlin.