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Lord Kelvin
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Unfortunately I was caught by surprise when I crossed the "Brücke der Deutschen Einheit" (Bridge of German Unity) on the A9 between Bavaria and Thuringia -- or West and East Germany, until 1990 -- so no pictures. But I did take a picture about a former border between the two Germanies:



Berlin wall outline in Friedrichstraße, near the infamous Checkpoint Charlie.
 

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Between the Spanish village of Canfranc-estacion and the French village of Forges d'Abel you can go through N-330 crossing the mountain pass of Somport or... with a 8.600 m road tunnel.

The tunnel is free of toll and was opened on January 2003. It is paralel to another tunnel of similar longitude. A railway tunnel closed int 1970. There are emergency corridors between both tunnels every 500m so old tunnel can be used as a perfect way in fatal situations.

Inside the tunnel it is very difficult to know in which country you are (5.800m in Spain and 2.800m in France aprox). There are no signals indicating and only, if you have a look to lateral tunnel sides... in the zone of the border it starts a draw with the French flag colours and later another draw with the Spanish flag colours. In the exact point of the border there is an European Union flag (in both sides of the tunnel).
But should you not pay attention to the tunnel sides... you will not notice the change of country at all, as well as no line in the asphalt or signal is set.

Furthermore, when you enter France you will see the normal signal when you change the country as well as the reminder of maximum speed allowed but... no indication if entering Spain. I think only reading signals in Spanish is the only reference you have change a country... On the mountain pass border there are the normal signals but after the tunnel... neither country, nor speed reminder, nor name of region and province, nor... just only normal signals of traffic.


Somport mountain pass is "historic".
It was one which was used by Anibal with its elephants when going through Rome and needed to cross Pyrenees.
It is also one of the two mountains passes used by pilgrims to St. James since the Middle Age: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Way_of_St._James

Just one km away of mountains pass there was one of the three most important Hospitals for Pilgrims: Santa Cristina de Somport (http://es.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hospital_de_Santa_Cristina_de_Somport)... together with St. Bernard and Jerusalem (for Pilgrims to Rome and Jerusalem).


On 1928, closed to the border it was opened the ski resort Candanchu, the first one in all Spain.

Today... you can go to the mountain pass for skiing, tourism, etc... but no need to go there for an international travel. You can use the 8,6 km tunnel.



 

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Dietrich von Welschbern
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It's the 2nd time I see you forgetting that Australia doesn't have international borders :lol:
I think his statement meant: so you're being cocky about european border crossings being boring? what about border crossings in Australia? You have none!
 

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About the village of Canfranc-estacion.

In 1928 a 8,6 km tunnel under the Pyrenees was built between France and Spain.

It is usual that in all railway borders having both customs terminal where arrive every train, or exceptions if stations very closed.

But this was a special case. Arriving to Canfranc from France means very little villages for 28 km in the middle of mountains and later a one lane only tunnel of 8,5 km.
So then, Spanish trains arrived to that station and tunnel was used by French trains only, making all customs, and anything related to trains on the village of Canfranc.

Canfranc station was the largest station at Spain for a lot of years. When it was opened they said... it was largest than Titanic (and it is thrue!!!, 15% largest). It is narrow but very largest.

In the station there was a hotel for passengers, too many services and, of course, Spanish and French customs, apart of all railway services for French and Spanish railways.

It was required to have too many French workers living at Canfranc (no sense to make a long trip since nearest villages at France) and a special bi-national treaty was signed.

This treaty means that workers of station and other French people allowed by both countries could stay at Canfranc on duty. They could not get off the village for any reason (there were exceptions... but with a special visa). Should they want to go anywhere in Spain they had to go to the railway station, go to French an Spanish customs and sign the passport as a normal passenger. So then, they would be allowed to get a train anywhere inside Spain. But it was mandatory to pass both customs before leaving the village. French citizens there were allowed to stay in the town, return to France or... going to Spain but passing both customs before.

In the same way, French Police had personnel at Canfranc and was allowed to walk around the town and had full authority over French citizens.

The station and railway service was opened at 1928 and... 11 years later, second world war began!.

When French occupation by German army, Canfranc station (inside Spanish territory) was not an exception.
German SS were the police charged on customs and controls to check who was leaving France.
It was not a difficult work because they had the full help from the fascist Spanish government there was then. And it was usual to see both German SS and Spanish police walking together around the town of Canfranc.
It was a town very important to check. For both countries it was one of the most easiest point to leave the country so both controls were very frequent. But... because the treaty, German controls were made inside that Spanish town.
At the Canfranc station, in the French side, the flag was supplied by the svastic German flag (yes... it was present inside Spain too for some years).

There are too many information about this station. It is proved that Portugal and Spain sent Wolframium to Germany (needed to build tanks) and it was payed with gold. Sometimes coming from Germany but usually from Swiss banks. They chosed that railway pass because it was one with less traffic.


At 1970 French railways closed the line and put a bus service (with railway prices and shuttle). As well as it was a "railway service" (but with bus), while at Canfranc there was a station foreman, it was only a detail but he was the one who gived the signal of depart to the bus as with a normal train.


Today 40% of the French railway closed is being updated to be opened again in some years.


And... should they come again the trains to Canfranc... no need to have a new treaty. The old treaty keeps still valid!!!
 

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Maybe one of the most famous borders is Gorizia / Novia Gorika at Italy /Slovenia.

But I want to talk about a very different (and similar) one.

It is the border between "Rihonor de Castilla" and "Rio de onor" Spain / Portugal.

About 150 people between the two towns and... with all the military dictatorship governments had both Spain and Portugal in the middle of 20th century, border was not closed, nor a custom control.

It is a village (two villages, considering the border) very small. The little shops are in one side, bar in the other side.

They have had only the administrative problem that, depending where they live and nationality, they will receive services from one side or the other.

But... in this very quite corner, it seems no border crosses between houses. Most of people are senior citizens. They earn similar retirement pension and... one of the points to discuss with your neighbour is if your country has increase your pension and the other country still not, of in less quantity...
 

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Unfortunately I was caught by surprise when I crossed the "Brücke der Deutschen Einheit" (Bridge of German Unity) on the A9 between Bavaria and Thuringia -- or West and East Germany, until 1990 -- so no pictures.
I was twicew in East Berlin, when the wall was there, in 1985 and 1989 (it was that autumn the wall was destroyed, but I was there in summer). Of course it was strictly forbidden to make photos at East-West checkpoints and I had no chance to visit West-Berlin since my passport was only valid for communist nations.
Friedrichstrasse railway station was divided into two parts those day: one for West and one for East. There was a concrete wall in the platform...
I went up to the globe of Alexanderplatz tower. I heard a tourst asking the tourist official: 'Is that there an airport?' (the object was at the other side of the wall). The official (a GDR citizen) answered: 'I don't know'. Another question: 'Just... I see an airplane landing there'. The offical angrily: 'Don't you understand? I don't know.'
 

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Dam border crossing between Romania and Serbia: 1 and 2.
Does anyone knows if the Iron Gate 2 ( Djerdap ) has opened ?

one friend said to me this in the topic border crossings of Serbia :
Ovaj granični prelaz još uvek nije u funkcije. Ali ga je DS iskoristila za izbornu kampanju u Negotinu, najavivši njegovo otvaranje.
which means : this border terminal does not work yet,but the authorities of the city hall from Negotin make use of this fact for the election,telling that it will be open

this is the border i`m talking about ...( sorry but only found pictures on romanian side ) ..... is very scarry :))) :cheers:


 

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Skeptic
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^ Yes, it's scary because it is an abandoned place for more than 23 years. The Romanian press wrote many times (1 or 2) - quoting Romanian authorities - that the Serbian part don't want that border to be opened. I don't know the reasons and I don't even know if it is true (Romanian authorities aren't always reliable). Anyway, the same debate was hosted months ago into the Romanian forums of SCC. The border crossing is located onto Romanian island of Ostrovu Mare, which is linked with the inland Romanian territory by this bridge, crossed only by the workers of Iron Gates 2 hydro power plant:

 

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Thank you so very very much for this information .. well ... i`m romanian actually with serbian roots ... i`ve read in the serbian press that they are really willing to open and they are ready to do this .. because the serbs don`t like too much transiting through Bulgaria ... but in the romanian press , didn`t found not one single article ... please give me the link with the article if you can ... it seems the romanian authorities don`t give a damn about this wich is a pitty because it would improve radically .... I can`t belive it .. we have the infrastructure and we do not use it ... the same thing is in Navoko and Lunga near Kikinda and Jimbolia .... there was a terminal border there but they closed it up ... last year they wanted again to reopen so instead and for those who would want to go Timisoara they would shorten the distance with 160 km !!!!! But the romanian side apollogied and said that due to the terms and conditions of european union they are unable to do so ... :bash::bash::bash: so instead od just 67 km ... the drivers must make a detour and go though Vatin and Moravita .... ....

this is how it looks like



 

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Skeptic
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Thank you so very very much for this information .. well ... i`m romanian actually with serbian roots...
Well, it's a small world! :) :cheers: Noroc!
i`ve read in the serbian press that they are really willing to open and they are ready to do this .. because the serbs don`t like too much transiting through Bulgaria ... but in the romanian press , didn`t found not one single article ... please give me the link with the article if you can ... it seems the romanian authorities don`t give a damn about this wich is a pitty because it would improve radically .
Quoting from the first articole I gave you the link: "Nu stim daca partea sarba – asa cum invoca frecvent autoritatile romane – n-a dorit deschiderea acestui punct de trecere, nici daca infrastructura de care nu dispun vecinii nostri ar fi fost motivul ce tine de 23 de ani bariera mereu coborata la capatul podului." (Translation: "We don't know if the Serbian part didn't want the opening of this border crossing - as Romanian authorities always affirm - or if the lack of infrastructure on the Serbian side is the reason because of which the barrier is always lowered at the end of the bridge").

... I can`t belive it .. we have the infrastructure and we do not use it ... the same thing is in Navoko and Lunga near Kikinda and Jimbolia .... there was a terminal border there but they closed it up ... last year they wanted again to reopen so instead and for those who would want to go Timisoara they would shorten the distance with 160 km !!!!! But the romanian side apollogied and said that due to the terms and conditions of european union they are unable to do so ... :bash::bash::bash: so instead od just 67 km ... the drivers must make a detour and go though Vatin and Moravita .... ....
You are unfortunately so right... :eek:hno:
I don't understand why, but Serbian-Romanian frontier seems to became lately one of the most impenetrable in Europe. Even more, the few border crossing which remained are in and advanced state of degradation (Iron Gates I, Naidăş and so on). This is stupid, stupid, stupid :bash:, not only because we are supposedly good neighbours, but also because of large numbers of Romanians living in Serbia and Serbians living in Romania.
 

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Well, it's a small world! :) :cheers: Noroc!

You are unfortunately so right... :eek:hno:
I don't understand why, but Serbian-Romanian frontier seems to became lately one of the most impenetrable in Europe. Even more, the few border crossing which remained are in and advanced state of degradation (Iron Gates I, Naidăş and so on). This is stupid, stupid, stupid :bash:, not only because we are supposedly good neighbours, but also because of large numbers of Romanians living in Serbia and Serbians living in Romania.
Noroc si tie prietene ! :eek:kay:

I`s stupid !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! there are so manny crossing borders withh common checkpoints .. this is not a real reason ... if Romania really wanted they would make it common and eliminate the whole problem ... nonsene

read and cry ... and tke notice that this article is written in 1998 ...
http://www.evz.ro/detalii/stiri/portile-de-fier-ii-vama-prin-care-nu-trece-nimeni-614798.html ----->romanian

http://translate.google.ro/translat...ii-vama-prin-care-nu-trece-nimeni-614798.html -------> english with google translation

what more it is to be said ? :(
 
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