As West Germany was reorganised and gained independence from its occupiers, the German Democratic Republic was established in East Germany in 1949. The creation of the two states solidified the 1945 division of Germany.  On 10 March 1952, (in what would become known as the " Stalin Note ") Stalin put forth a proposal to reunify Germany with a policy of neutrality, with no conditions on economic policies and with guarantees for "the rights of man and basic freedoms, including freedom of speech, press, religious persuasion, political conviction, and assembly" and free activity of democratic parties and organizations.  This was turned down; reunification was not a priority for the leadership of West Germany, and the NATO powers declined the proposal, asserting that Germany should be able to join NATO and that such a negotiation with the Soviet Union would be seen as a capitulation. There have been several debates about whether a real chance for reunification had been missed in 1952.
After German reunification in 1990, the Peter-Fechter-Stelle memorial was constructed on Zimmerstrasse, at the precise spot where he had died on the Eastern side, and this has been a focal point for some of the commemorations regarding the wall.  The shooting has also been the subject of documentaries on German television. Cornelius Ryan dedicated his book The Last Battle to the memory of Fechter. Composer Aulis Sallinen wrote an orchestral work Mauermusik to commemorate Fechter. In 2007, artist Mark Gubb was commissioned by the Institute of Contemporary Arts to create a performance  based on the death of Peter Fechter. The performance was a one-hour live piece that was later recorded and screened at the ICA with a discussion panel at the end consisting of the artist, and actor Dominik Danielewicz who played the part of Peter Fechter. The 1972 ballad Libre ("Free") - a recording famous in all Ibero-America - by Spanish singer Nino Bravo , remembers this event.  In 2012 Canadian playwright Jordan Tannahill 's play Peter Fechter: 59 Minutes , a poetic re-imagining of the final hour of Fechter's life, was produced in Canada and Berlin. 
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