Updated: 05-Nov-2001 1989

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December 1989

3 Dec

Resignation of new East German Politburo and Central Committee amid revelations of Communist leaderships misrule and corruption.

4 Dec

NATO Summit Meeting in Brussels. US President George Bush briefs NATO leaders on his talks with Soviet President Gorbachev at the US-Soviet Summit Meeting in Malta on 2-3 December. The Summit Meeting of leaders of the Warsaw Treaty Organisation in Moscow publishes a joint statement denouncing the 1968 invasion of Czechoslovakia by Warsaw Pact forces and repudiates the Brezhnev Doctrine of limited sovereignty.

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7 Dec

Resignation of President Gustav Husak and formation of coalition government in Czechoslovakia. NATOs Atlantic Award for 1989 is bestowed on Sir Michael Howard, President and co-founder of the International Institute for Strategic Studies (IISS).

11 Dec

Popular demonstrations in Bulgaria lead to the promise of free elections and renunciation of the leading role of the Communist Party.

14-15 Dec

Ministerial Meeting of the North Atlantic Council in Brussels. Foreign Ministers review accelerating political change in Central and Eastern Europe.

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19 Dec

Soviet Foreign Minister Eduard Shevardnadze visits NATO Headquarters for talks with NATO Secretary General Manfred Woerner and Permanent Representatives of NATO countries the first such visit by a Minister of a Central or Eastern European government.

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20 Dec

Troops and police open fire on thousands of anti-government protesters in the Romanian town of Timisoara.

22 Dec

Fall of Ceausescu regime. Nicolai Ceausescu is arrested by the Romanian armed forces and executed on 25 December. The National Salvation Front headed by Ion Iliescu takes control and promises free elections.

29 Dec

The Polish Parliament abolishes the leading role of the Communist Party and restores the countrys name as the Republic of Poland. Vaclav Havel is elected President of Czechoslovakia.