After the surrender of Germany, the remaining German territory and Berlin were partitioned by the Allies into four military occupation zones. Together these zones accepted more than 6.5 million of the ethnic Germans expelled from eastern areas. The western sectors, controlled by France, the United Kingdom, and the United States, were merged on 23 May 1949 to form the Federal Republic of Germany (Bundesrepublik Deutschland); on 7 October 1949, the Soviet Zone became the German Democratic Republic (Deutsche Demokratische Republik). They were informally known as “West Germany” and “East Germany”. East Germany selected East Berlin as its capital, while West Germany chose Bonn as a provisional capital, to emphasize its stance that the two-state solution was an artificial and temporary status quo.
After the revocation of the status as an occupied country, the Federal Republic of Germany became a sovereign state on May 5, 1955.