After the Stasi files law took effect on December 29, 1991, numerous (real or alleged) ex-Stasi informants were "unmasked," sparking an emotional public debate on how to deal with the East German past. In response, on March 12, 1992, the Bundestag decided to assemble the "Enquete Commission for the Reappraisal of the History and Consequences of the SED Dictatorship." This 43-member, non-partisan commission was active from 1992-1998; it was made up of Bundestag representatives and independent experts. Its task was to contribute to the public reappraisal of the East Germany past. The commission was chaired by CDU representative Rainer Eppelmann. Among other suggestions, the Enquête Commission recommended the establishment of a national foundation for the reappraisal of the SED-dictatorship.
This photo shows two members of the commission, former East German Foreign Minister Markus Meckel (SPD) (right), and Hansjörg Geiger, then director of the Gauck Agency. The two were photographed on April 11, 1994, in the former Stasi headquarters in Berlin. Photo: Peer Grimm.