The VELVET REVOLUTION refers to a non-violentrevolution in former Czechoslovakia that saw theoverthrow of the Communist government. The VelvetRevolution was a start of a democratization process inthe country. Czechoslovakia held afterwards its firstdemocratic elections in summer 1990 after more than 40years of a totalitarian regime.On November 17, 1989, riot police suppressed apeaceful student demonstration in Prague. That eventsparked a series of popular demonstrations fromNovember 19 to late December. By the end ofNovember the number of peaceful protesters assembledin Prague had swelled from 200,000 the previous day toan estimated half-million. The peaceful protests seizedthe all country A two-hour general strike, involving allcitizens of Czechoslovakia, was held on November 27.
With the collapse of other Warsaw Pactgovernments and increasing street protests, theCommunist Party of Czechoslovakia announced onNovember 28 that it would relinquish power anddismantle the single-party state. Barbed wire andother obstructions were removed from the borderwith West Germany and Austria in early December.On December 10, President Gustáv Husákappointed the first largely non-communistgovernment in Czechoslovakia since 1948, andresigned. Alexander Dubček was elected speaker ofthe federal parliament on December 28 and VáclavHavel the President of Czechoslovakia onDecember 29, 1989.In June 1990, Czechoslovakia held its firstdemocratic elections since 1946.