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Inside View

Inside View

From RFE/RL'S Brussels correspondent Rikard Jozwiak:

It is a very messy situation.

Officially, Finland has taken the blame for stopping the new sanctions from taking effect for now. Their prime minister last night said that they are supporting the sanctions but that they need more time to implement them.

But there are more countries in that camp, including Slovakia, Hungary, Austria, Italy, Bulgaria, and Cyprus. They are all happy for this to just to go away. The more "hardcore" countries are obviously not too happy with this but both the Swedish and Lithuanian diplomats I spoke to seem to concede that there has been some improvement in Russian-Ukrainian relations in the last 48 hours to warrant a more cautious approach.

They are also pointing to the fact that there was a sort of compromise on September 8 because the statement by Herman Van Rompuy says that the measures will enter into force with the publication in the EU's official journal in the next few days.

But as I understand it, the sanctions might very well be published but also annulled at the same time so they never properly enter into force. The key sentence of the statement reads: "Depending on the situation on the ground, the EU stands ready to review the agreed sanctions in whole or in part."

Already on September 10 at 11.00 ambassadors will meet again to assess the implementation of the cease-fire and the peace plan. If there is no deterioration, the sanctions might very well never enter into force.