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Night Of Death in Stammheim

17 October 1977

In 1977 the members of the Rote Armee Fraktion (RAF, Red Army Faction) are detained in the Stammheim Prison, and face a life sentence. In October a group of Palestinians comes to their support. They hijack a Lufthansa plane and demand the release of the RAF prisoners. The German government sends a commando team in place of the prisoners to Mogadishu airport, which ends the hijacking attempt. Back in Stammheim, the RAF members have been following the drama on a smuggled transistor radio. After hearing of the success of the raid, in the night of 17 to 18 October, Baader, Raspe, and Ensslin confront death.  Suicide is the official explanation, but some people insist they were executed. The document shown is from the Stammheim library collection at the IISH and has marginal notes by members of the RAF.