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Hannover's Twin City in Saxony

Leipzig Neues Rathaus © Hans-Ulrich Hülsbusch

With more than 520,000 inhabitants, Leipzig is the largest city in Saxony. Lying at the intersection of the major east-west and north-south trade routes, the city was a place of thriving commerce and trade throughout its 1000-year history. Leipzig, the city of the Peaceful Revolution of 1989, is the cultural center in the region, shaped by centuries of musical history and a diverse literature, art and creative cosmos. Significant musicians, such as Johann Sebastian Bach, Felix Mendelssohn Bartholdy, Edvard Grieg, Gustav Mahler, Clara, and Robert Schumann, have all worked here. The Museum of Fine Arts, newly built in 2004, houses many works of the New Leipzig School in its permanent exhibition. Student and alternative cultures also add to the cultural wealth of the city. Being the oldest trade fair city, with very good logistic structures and transport connections, and at the same time a scientific location with seven universities and numerous research institutes, Leipzig is one of the most important metropolises in the East German states.

How it began: The partnership between Hanover and Leipzig

In November 1987, Hanover, the capital of the federal state of Lower Saxony, entered into a partnership with the most important trade fair city in the former GDR.  After the fall of the Berlin Wall, this partnership became the base for lively contact and direct action between the citizens. Since then, permanent and close relations have been developed through citizen’s meetings in the field of art and culture. In June 1990, the former chief municipal director of Hanover, Dr. Lehmann-Grube, was elected mayor of Leipzig. At this point in time, Hanover supported the city of Leipzig materially, e.g. with vehicles for street cleaning, with assistance in the administrative restructuring, and with training of employees of the city’s government. The mayor of Hanover, like the mayors of Leipzig and Frankfurt on the Main, is a member of the "Mayors for Peace" initiative, which campaigns for global disarmament of nuclear weapons. In 2005, young people from Leipzig and Hanover joined the International Youth Conference for a peaceful future, which took place in Hiroshima.

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