Dr. Claus-Jürgen Duisberg

Bonn, Nordrhein-Westfalen
* 1934

We owe it to a curious concatenation of luck and merit that today all Germans can live in freedom under one state again.

Biografie auf Deutsch
  • deutsche Einheit
  • westdeutsche Zeitzeugen
  • Umbruchserfahrungen seit 1989/90
  • Englisch

Biographical information

1934 Born in Frankfurt am Main
1955 Abitur in Wolfsburg
1955-1958 Law studies in Bonn and Geneva
1958 First state examination as a lawyer
1962 Doctorate of Canon and Civil Law at the University of Bonn
1963 Second state examination as a lawyer
1964 Entry into the diplomatic service
1964-1986 Stationed at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and the embassies in Moscow (1964-1965), Washington (1967-1972), New Delhi (1972-1975), and West Germany's Permanent Representation in East Berlin (1978-1982)
1986-1990 Chair of the 'Germany Policy' task force at the German Chancellery
1990-1995 Director of the Foreign Ministry's office in Berlin
1992-1994 Simultaneously chief negotiator for the contract regulating the presence and withdrawal of Russian troops
1995-1999 German ambassador to Brazil


Claus J. Duisberg, born in Frankfurt am Main, studied law in Bonn and Geneva. Following both his state examinations as a lawyer and the completion of his doctorate, he found employment with the Foreign Service in 1964 and remained there until his retirement in 1990. He held several posts in the Ministry of Foreign Affairs as well as the embassies in Moscow, Washington and New Delhi. After working on Germany and East Berlin-specific matters in Washington as well as at headquarters in Bonn, he was transferred to West Germany's Permanent Representation in East Berlin for four years from 1978 onward. From 1986 to 1990 he led the task force on Germany policy (Arbeitsstab Deutschlandpolitik) in the Chancellery under Helmut Kohl and ministers Schäuble and Seiters, and, given this function, was directly involved in negotiating the unification treaty. Following German reunification, he became the director of the Foreign Ministry's Berlin office responsible for dismantling the East German Foreign Ministry until 1995, including from 1992 as chief negotiator for the withdrawal of Russian troops from Germany. From 1995-99 he served as the German ambassador to Brazil. He published his memoirs and experiences during German reunification in 2004 in a book titled Das deutsche Jahr - Einblicke in die Wiedervereinigung 1989/1990 ('The German Year - Insights into Reunification 1989/1990'), published by wjs Verlag in Berlin.


"Politische Probleme im Herbst 1989", von Claus J. Duisberg

"Die Deutsche Einheit. Probleme, Widerstände, Verwirklichung", von Claus J. Duisberg


Die Unterrichtsmodule zum Thema "Deutsche Einheit" beinhalten Anregungen zur Vor- und Nachbereitung von Zeitzeugengesprächen zu diesem Thema im Unterricht und für eine Begegnung mit Claus J. Duisberg. Die Module "Arbeit am Begriff Zeitzeuge“ und "Zeitzeugenbegegnungen" können in der Vor- und Nachbereitung der jeweiligen Unterrichtseinheiten zum Einsatz kommen.