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EU considering sports sanctions against Russia over Ukraine, but swift imposition unlikely

Poland EU Tusk-1.jpg

FILE- In this Sept.12, 2011 file photo then European Council President Herman Van Rompuy, right, and Poland's Prime Minister Donald Tusk address the media, at the European Council building in Brussels. Tusk was chosen by European leaders to be the next president of the European Council. (AP Photo/Yves Logghe) (The Associated Press)

European Union nations are looking at sporting sanctions to punish Russia for its involvement in the Ukraine crisis but diplomats say the immediate targeting of high-profile events like the 2018 World Cup is unlikely at this stage.

An EU official with knowledge of the proposals said Wednesday sports sanctions are under consideration as the EU seeks to get new measures ready by the weekend.

Diplomats from three member states said it was unrealistic to think the 28-nation group would try to impose such measures now, and said ambassadors would more likely seek a deepening of current sanctions.

The individuals spoke on condition of anonymity because the talks were still ongoing.

The EU has so far imposed sanctions against dozens of Russian officials and Russia's financial and arms industry.