The 27 EU countries have asked the European Commission to issue guidelines for admitting Russian men seeking refuge in the European Union not to have to fight in Ukraine.
According to insiders, two groups of countries are facing each other, and they have not agreed to crisis consultations in Brussels.
One group of countries keeps the door shut for Russian deserters; the other group, to which the Netherlands belongs, does not want that in advance. Member states bordering Russia, particularly the three Baltic states (Estonia, Latvia and Lithuania) and Poland, are already refusing to issue visas.
They fear, among other things, that possible spies also try to enter the EU under pretences. The European Commission warned them last week that they must comply with international refugee treaties.
The Czech Republic, which holds the temporary EU presidency and manages the agenda, convened EU ambassadors, the European Commission and the EU’s foreign affairs service in Brussels on Monday to discuss Ukraine and Russia and coordinate measures.
The meeting also discussed how the EU could help Ukraine get through the winter, especially the 11 million displaced people in the war-torn country.