Photo. Visitors at the opening of the exhibition, 'Drawings by Refugee Children,' August 29, 1953
&copy Landesarchiv Berlin - Willy Kiel

Station XII: Transport Office

Once the refugees’ destination had been set, the transport office arranged travel to West Germany. Because they were not permitted to cross East German territory by land or water, the refugees were flown out of West Berlin. They took unused seats on commercial flights operated by, for example, British European Airways and PAN AM. The refugees boarded buses from the camp bound to Tempelhof Airport (after the beginning of the 1970s, Tegel Airport). At Tempelhof, some refugees awaiting early morning flights spent the night in special barracks. In this way, authorities at Marienfelde avoided the ruckus that would have ensued from having refugees wake up at night to make their way to a Berlin airport.

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