In 1968, a self-named "true successor" to the (banned) West German KPD was formed, the KPD/ML (Marxist–Leninist), which followed Maoist ideas. It went through multiple splits and united with a Trotskyist group in 1986 to form the Unified Socialist Party (VSP), which failed to gain any influence and dissolved in the early 1990s.  However, multiple tiny splinter groups originating in the KPD/ML still exist, several of which claim the name of KPD. Another party with this name was formed in 1990 in East Berlin by several hardline Communists who had been expelled from the PDS, including Erich Honecker . The "KPD (Bolshevik)" split off from the East German KPD in 2005, bringing the total number of (more or less) active KPDs to at least 5. The Left , formed out of a merger between the PDS and Labour and Social Justice – The Electoral Alternative in 2007, claims to be the historical successor of the KPD (by way of the PDS).