The SED victims still need help because they and their families experienced terrible things that non-affected people often cannot understand and comprehend. They were subjected to political persecution, social decomposition and, as political prisoners, physical violence, but above all psychological torture, and have experienced a wide variety of traumas.


The traumas suffered have changed the personalities of most of the victims. A small number of them have survived the traumas relatively unscathed, but the majority of them still suffer from post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) in one form or another to this day.


At the same time, they have also developed a particularly strong sense of injustice, and therefore continue to resist injustice to this day, against the lack of understanding that is shown to them in many ways, especially by large parts of politics. But they are not looking for pity, nor do they need charity - rather, they are looking for understanding and recognition, which has been denied them to this day. They feel that the bureaucratic hurdles in the rehabilitation laws that have been passed with regard to the individual case examination and the principle of need are particularly unjust. Here, a long-overdue reversal of the burden of proof should be enshrined in law as soon as possible. Each of them experienced their own history under the second German dictatorship, which is an integral part of German history and which we must not suppress, whether we like it or not. That's why we should also focus much more on the positive side of this part of German history because we can learn a lot from it and pass it on to younger generations.


What are the positive things about it? As we know, trauma can destroy a person or a person can grow from it and experience new, beautiful things. Many of the SED victims have grown from their experienced traumas, and today have grown into indomitable fighters against injustice and against forgetting. Without their inherent hope, the SED victims would not have been able to continue their struggle until today.


Due to the injustice committed during the SED dictatorship, in a blatant manner.

  ◦ the UN Declaration of Human Rights of ◦ the UN Declaration of Human Rights of 10.12.1948, the General Assembly   

    Resolution 217 A (III);

  ◦ the UN Civil Pact and UN Social Pact, to which the GDR acceded in 1973,

  ◦ violated the entered, international obligations of the Helsinki Final Act of 01.08.1975.


However, the German government also violates until today the articles 1, 7, 17 prohibition of discrimination, equality before the law, right and protection of property from the Universal Declaration of Human Rights of the UN (Resolution 217 A (III) of 10.12.1948) and article 1, obligation to respect human rights, article 14 prohibition of discrimination from the European Convention for the Protection of Human Rights.


The human rights legally enshrined in these articles are still not granted to the victims in reunified Germany. Germany is thus guilty of serious human rights violations and tolerates them.


The liability of the convention states of the European Convention for the Protection of Human Rights/EMRK - i.e. also of Germany - results, according to Art. 41 ECHR and the violations of convention law according to Art. 1, Additional Protocol 1, concerning the guarantee of property and the prohibition of discrimination, according to previous international case law, e.g. of the European Court of Human Rights, in the corresponding liability conditions of Germany for the claims of the SED victims. It is irrelevant what the act of violation consists of - it exists, as in the case at hand, in the administrative as well as in the legislative sphere.

  • In principle, any kind of damage (material and immaterial) is compensable. For the 3.6 million resettlers, refugees, and ransomed prisoners from the GDR, reunification meant a worsening of their social situation, because they originally, legally awarded, West German substitute pensions were retroactively, unlawfully confiscated after reunification. The illegality lies in its retroactive effect and in the replacement of their higher pension entitlements, according to the pension law of the old FRG, by pension entitlements of the acceding territory, i.e. the GDR, although the internationally customary prohibition of retroactive effect also in Germany (Article 103, Paragraph 2 of the Basic Law) has its roots in the principle of the rule of law and does not apply to the 3.6 million resettlers, refugees and ransomed prisoners are illegal and thus void. The Foreign Pensions Act/FRG is applicable to the entire group of victims (GDR refugees with C ID cards and former political prisoners), since there is no German law that has ever invalidated this law, i.e. no amendment/leveling of the law or new law is required for this.
  • Also, the current legal provision of § 93 SGB VI, which reduces the old-age pension in the event of a coincidence of pensions from the statutory pension insurance and the statutory accident insurance according to which the old-age pension is reduced, must be deleted without replacement.
  • We demand an urgent, sustainable improvement of our social conditions as well as an elimination of the still existing discrimination against Nazi victims, which violates international human rights not only according to German law, but also internationally, Therefore, we claim equality with the Nazi victims or alternatively a monthly, tax-free honorary pension / victims' pension of 750.- Euro per month, which is to be dynamically adjusted to the annual inflation rate. The previous means-tested regulation is to be abolished. In addition, the honorary pension/victim's pension can be inherited by the natural children.
  • In addition to the honorary pension/victim's pension, all former political prisoners of the SED regime receive a monthly tax-free compensation payment of 300 euros for forced labor performed during political imprisonment.
  • June 17 is to be reintroduced as an additional commemoration day/holiday in Germany.
  • All former political prisoners of the SED regime receive an annual "mobility pass" from the Federal Republic of Germany, which guarantees free travel on all public transportation including ICE/IC within Germany.
  • Consequential damages or illnesses caused by imprisonment in the GDR or socialist states must be recognized and compensated unbureaucratically. In doing so, we oppose the illusion that it is possible to draw a final line under the compensation regulations for the victims of a violent regime.
  • The denial of SED injustice as well as the public display or dissemination of GDR symbols and the glorification of the GDR dictatorship must be made a punishable offense.
  • The Federal Republic of Germany shall award each recognized former political prisoner and SED victim a medal, to be newly created specifically for this purpose, for bravery and patriotism in the fight against the SED dictatorship and services to German reunification. This award is intended to give the most severely affected victims of the SED dictatorship a special and outstanding status and to enhance the commemorative culture of the Federal Republic of Germany.
  • Prison facilities of the former GDR that were operated with political prisoners of the SED regime are to be developed as memorials (see the example of the Berlin-Hohenschönhausen Memorial) in such a way that future generations can vividly see what happened in the SBZ and later in the GDR. Contemporary witnesses and initiatives for the preservation or operation of the GDR Injustice Memorial Sites are to be provided with financial resources in such a way that nothing is lacking.
  • The curricula in schools from grade 9 onward are to be designed in such a way that the GDR era is presented in an objective and enlightening manner.
  • The increases in the pension entitlements of SED perpetrators (wardens, prison superintendents, Stasi officers, and judges and prosecutors of the former GDR who persecuted dissenters for political reasons and put them behind bars) are legally inadmissible and thus null and void, since these increases were passed retroactively in 2001 by the Bundestag, and both nationally and internationally a ban on retroactivity exists and discriminates against SED victims. The same applies to the retroactively repealed caps for the elites of the SED dictatorship based on a decision of the German Federal Constitutional Court/BVG, as the pension entitlements of SED functionaries, would also, be subject to the property protection of the Basic Law. However, the same German court has decided the opposite in the case of the 3.6 million resettlers, refugees, and ransomed prisoners, and has to this day denied these persons their pension entitlements, which were lawfully acquired under the FRG and are also protected by the GG. With this denial of justice by the highest court, our discrimination under pension law, which continues to this day, has been cemented. We will not put up with this! We call upon the German government to ensure that the victims of the SED dictatorship are granted just "reparations" and to compensate them materially in a uniform manner comparable to the compensation payments and their legal regulations to victims of the Nazi regime.
  • A foundation for the victims of the SED dictatorship, independent of any political party is to be established by federal law.

Our aforementioned demands are a call to the German government to respect human rights also with regard to the SED victims, and to immediately end the violations that exist to this day.



Justice therefore requires the urgency of Now!