Term for committees which were formed during the time of upheaval of the GDR in order to overcome a national state of emergency and which took over legislative and executive tasks, although they did not have a legitimate mandate authorised by a democratic election.
Participants of all opposition forces faced the representatives of the old power as equal opponents at the round tables. On 7/12/1989 the Central Round Table was established which had a very strong influence on the work of the interim government under Modrow until 12/3/1990. At the Central Round table 39 seats existed for representatives of parties and organisations in addition to the seats of the representatives of the churches and those of the government.
In addition to the Central Round Table, numerous other round tables existed, on the regional levels of the districts, councils, towns, etc., but also others concerning special subjects (women, media, sports, etc.). In this form, the round tables should be viewed as peaceful self-organisations which on the one hand prevented anarchy and violence and on the other hand were able to form the basis for free and democratic development.