Sanctions against Russia are inevitable if it does not do enough to resolve the crisis in Ukraine.
German Chancellor Angela Merkel said this at a business conference in Berlin on Tuesday, Radio Liberty reported.
"We're working on a diplomatic resolution to this crisis. As long as Russia contributes very little or nothing to overcome this crisis, we need economic sanctions. They're unavoidable, although I know they impact the German and the European economies," Merkel said.
According to the United Nations, 957 people have been killed in eastern Ukraine since the beginning of the ceasefire as of November 18.
Ukraine and the West accuse Russia of supplying arms and fighters to Donbas, as well as using Russian troops in Donbas. Moscow denies these charges.
The West introduced a series of sanctions against Russia for its role in destabilizing the situation in Ukraine. Moscow introduced restrictive measures in response.