Less than one week before German unification, the East and West German Social Democratic parties have merged into a single organization pledging to help the new Germany "find its place in a peaceful Europe."
When the two countries unite Oct. 3, the Social Democratic Party, or SPD, will be the largest opposition group to the conservative-led government of Chancellor Helmut Kohl.Only two of more than 550 delegates at the SPD's reunification congress voted against the new party's rules.
"Together we start work, so that for the first time in history Germany can find its place in a peaceful Europe," the party said in its new manifesto.
"Neither national self-contentment nor even nationalistic exuberance are needed now, but rather solidarity of Germans among themselves," the statement said. "What is also needed is solidarity with the peoples of central and eastern Europe."