Stasi Prison Berlin Hohenschönhausen

The old Stasi prison of Berlin still stands in the Lichtenberg district of Berlin. Built in 1938 as a factory and inaugurated in May 1945 by the Russian NKWD as a camp for “political prisoners”.

In the basement of the prison were (literally) dungeons for interrogation (yes, you can call it torture) where people sat in solitary confinement.

After 1951 it was taken into use by the Stasi / MFS as a prison for primarily political prisoners. These were sometimes (after a confusing drive through Berlin) brought in with a fake bakery van, so they had no idea where they were. So, they didn't know if they were still in Berlin or somewhere outside Berlin, as they couldn't see out and the van deliberately detoured (sometimes for hours) to add to the confusion.

Within the GDR, prisoners who had meanwhile been convicted were also transported by train, and one of those unique carriages (with cells in it) is also located here.

Berlin Hohenschönhausen was primarily for interrogation and indoctrination, so the final sentence was often served elsewhere after some sort of criminal trial.

At: https://www.stiftung-hsh.de/ you'll find more info and if you go there: do the guided tour. This is often done by former prisoners of the GDR regime, and the stories are sometimes downright terrifying…

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