Between 19, more than 18 students were arrested or persecuted, some even executed by the soviet secret police (NKVD).
The universities were increasingly influenced by communism as they were ground for the political disputes of the postwar period.
This led to protests by students critical of the prevailing system.
The climax of the protests was reached on 23 April 1948: after three students were expelled from the university without a trial, about 2,000 students protested at the Hotel Esplanade.
By the end of April, the governor of the United States Army Lucius D.
Founded in West Berlin during the early Cold War period, its name refers to city's status as part of the free western world.