ROC President Stanislav Pozdnyakov says "service to the motherland is an honourable duty" ©Getty Images

President of the Russian Olympic Committee Stanislav Pozdnyakov has stated that the country's athletes should be honoured to fight in the war of Ukraine after Vladimir Putin ordered a partial mobilisation of troops.

Russian President Putin is calling up thousands of extra troops to the military after suffering setbacks on the battlefield.

Around 300,000 reservists are due to be conscripted out of a vast reserve force of 25 million people.

"From the point of view of the Russian Olympic Committee (ROC), we, being citizens of the country, consider service to the motherland is an honourable duty and an honourable duty of every citizen, including members of national teams," Pozdnyakov said, as reported by Russian state-run news agency TASS, at the ROC meeting in Moscow.

Pozdnyakov is the head of Culture & Education Commission at the Association of National Olympic Committee (ANOC). 

His comments are particularly interesting as the International Olympic Committee (IOC) is discussing "whether there is a pathway" for the return of Russian athletes to international sport.

Ukrainian forces have recaptured key towns and villages in the northern Kharkiv region and have made a slower, but still significant progress in the southern Kherson region.

Russia, however, still holds about a fifth of the country.

The continued ban of Russian athletes from international competitions in response to the invasion of Ukraine was also discussed in the capital.

Paris 2024 and Milan Cortina 2026 are the main objectives for the country's return to the global sporting community.

Vladimir Putin has ordered a partial mobilisation in Russia after suffering setbacks in the war in Ukraine ©Getty Images
Vladimir Putin has ordered a partial mobilisation in Russia after suffering setbacks in the war in Ukraine ©Getty Images

"All events with the participation of our athletes are closely monitored abroad, and we even receive feedback," said Pozdnyakov.

"In the current conditions, we organise our activities variably, taking into account scenarios of possible events, we are ready for any of them.

"The basic and preferred scenario is the return of Russian athletes to international competitions on the eve of the Olympic Games in 2024 and 2026.

"The ROC is doing everything within its competence to ensure that sanctions against Russian athletes are lifted."

Pozdnyakov admitted, however, that there are no parameters for return and the ROC understands that Russia's participation at the Games "will largely depend on a number of non-sporting factors."

When the Court of Arbitration for Sport makes its decision on the ROC's lawsuit against the European Olympic Committees (EOC) at the end of the year, Pozdnyakov has stated that he will question if membership in the continental organisation is worthwhile.

The feud stems from when it was banned from the EOC's General Assembly in Skopje, along with the National Olympic Committee of the Republic of Belarus.

"The IOC recommendations to the International Federations regarding the participation of Russian and Belarusian athletes in competitions remain in place," was IOC's response when approached for a comment on Pozdnyakov's statements. 

insidethegames has contacted the ANOC for a comment.