AN escape tunnel underneath the Berlin Wall has opened to the public for the first time amid celebrations of the 30-year anniversary of the opening of communist East Germany’s border.

The tunnel at Bernauer Strasse, near the city’s main wall memorial, was opened by Mayor Michael Mueller.

He thanked those who started digging the 100-metre tunnel in late 1970, nine years after East Germany sealed its border.

“It’s great to see that the battle for freedom was also taken underground,” Mueller said before he took a tour of the new exhibition.

“One can authentically experience ... the courage of the women and men who tried to take people to freedom and resisted the East German regime,” he added.

The tunnel was built by a group of people who had escaped earlier to West Berlin.

MEANWHILE, the International Criminal Court has sentenced a Congolese warlord known as “the Terminator” to 30 years in jail after he was convicted of crimes including murder, rape and sexual slavery.

The sentence was the highest ever passed by the court.

Bosco Ntaganda (left) was found guilty in July of 18 counts of war crimes and crimes against humanity for his role as a military commander in atrocities in an ethnic conflict in a mineral-rich region of Democratic Republic of the Congo in 2002-2003.

Ntaganda showed no emotion as Presiding Judge Robert Fremr passed sentences ranging from eight years to 30 years for individual crimes.

ELSEWHERE, New Zealand legislators have joined forces across the aisle to pass a bill aimed at combating climate change.

The Zero Carbon Bill aims to make New Zealand reduce its greenhouse gas emissions to the point the country becomes mostly carbon neutral by 2050.

It gives some leeway to farmers who bring in much of the country’s foreign income.

Prime minister Jacinda Ardern (left) said she sometimes despairs at the pace at which other countries are making changes to fight global warming and vowed that New Zealand would be a leader.

“We’re here because our world is warming. Undeniably it is warming,” she said. “And so therefore the question for all of us is what

side of history will we choose to

sit on.”

FINALLY, Saudi Arabia’s government recruited two Twitter employees to gather information on thousands of accounts that included prominent opponents, US prosecutors have alleged.

The complaint unsealed in the US District Court in San Francisco detailed a coordinated effort by Saudi government officials to recruit employees at the social media giant to look up the private data of Twitter accounts.