(Bloomberg) -- There’s still time to dial back the tension between Russia and Ukraine, backed by western countries, according to Finnish Foreign Minister Pekka Haavisto.

“There will be a strong reaction by the European Union if any violent attacks against Ukraine will happen, but I think the door for diplomacy is still open and it’s very important to use that,” Haavisto said in an interview on Bloomberg TV on Wednesday. “In these kinds of circumstances we have to be ready for everything.”

Haavisto underlined that Finland, a neighbor to Russia, is not currently seeking membership in the North Atlantic Treaty Organization, though works closely with the military alliance.

“We do not accept any thinking of spheres of influence in Europe where countries are divided,” he said. “Every country has the right to choose if they are allied or non-allied and this includes also Finland.”

Asked whether EU countries should consider removing Russia from the Swift international payments transfer system, Haavisto declined to speculate on the toolkit policy makers will choose, saying “all issues are at the table at the moment.”

Pressure must be put on Russia “to follow the steps of the Minsk agreement,” Haavisto said. “This is the way out of this crisis -- that we find a permanent solution for Donbass.”

©2022 Bloomberg L.P.