President Putin has chosen to escalate the conflict in south-eastern Ukraine, thereby ignoring both the sanctions and the diplomatic advances of the EU and its partners in response to Russia’s belligerence towards its neighbour over the last six months. Ahead of the NATO Summit in Wales on September 4-5, calls are growing for EU member states to provide arms and more intelligence to Ukraine’s beleaguered army. But it is far from certain that the EU will summon up the collective courage to do so. Beyond sanctions, what other options does the EU have to alter the Kremlin’s calculus?
Steven Blockmans is Senior Research Fellow at CEPS and Head of the EU Foreign Policy research programme.