Yulia Stupak says she will not condemn Russia ©Getty Images

Russian Olympic champion Yulia Stupak has said she will not compete in events as a neutral if she is required to declare that she opposes her country.

The International Olympic Committee has stated that it is exploring pathways for Russian and Belarusian athletes to participate in competitions, particularly the Paris 2024 Olympic and Paralympic Games, after previously recommending a ban on the countries in response to the invasion of Ukraine.

"I heard that work is underway to allow us to be in a neutral status," Stupak said, as reported by Russia's official state news agency TASS.

"There is talk that you will have to sign some paper.

"To this I would like to say that we will not sign any paper stating that we oppose our country.

"We are really tired of infringing on our rights and humiliating the dignity of a Russian athlete.

"I am a Russian athlete, I love and respect my country.

Yulia Stupak, left, feels it is best not to push athletes into politics ©Getty Images
Yulia Stupak, left, feels it is best not to push athletes into politics ©Getty Images

"And if I am given neutral status, then I will not sign any paper."

Cross-country skier Stupak won gold competing for the Russian Olympic Committee at Beijing 2022 in the 4x5-kilometres relay.

She also has three bronzes from combined efforts at Pyeongchang 2018 and in the Chinese capital.

"It seems that if you are Russian, then you are stupid and uneducated, you do not know how to do anything and do not know how to behave," Stupak said.

"We have a broad soul, we live with great love in our hearts, we adore our sport, we love and are devoted to our country.

"What more do we need? 

"If you want to shove us into politics, it's best not to.

"We just want to run, that's all."