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MOSCOW, February 6. /TASS/. Russia will issue 250,000 stamps depicting the wolf as a mascot for the 2018 FIFA World Cup, the press office of the federal postal operator Post Office of Russia told TASS on Monday.
"A postal bloc depicting the official mascot of the 2018 FIFA World Cup Russia will be released into postal circulation on February 7. The 102x71mm postal bloc containing a 30x42mm stamp at a par value of 100 rubles and issued with a circulation of 250,000 copies will be offered for sale at branches of the Post Office of Russia," the press office said.
In addition to the stamps, the Post Office of Russia will issue first day covers and prepare special redemption postmarks for the cities of Volgograd, Yekaterinburg, Kazan, Kaliningrad, Krasnodar, Moscow, Nizhny Novgorod, Rostov-on-Don, Samara, St. Petersburg, Saransk and Sochi where the ceremony will be held on February 7.
The campaign to choose an official mascot for the 2018 FIFA World Cup in Russia started in April 2016. At the first stage, Russian football fans chose ten candidates, after which a special panel picked three finalists - the wolf, the cat and the tiger. The open voting held on October 21, 2016 announced the Wolf called Zabivaka (the one who scores) as the winner of the contest.
Russia is currently in full-swing preparations for the global football tournament after the country clinched the bid, following the final vote at the FIFA Executive Committee in December 2010. The victory came following a tight race against the bids from England, Portugal and Spain, in addition to a joint bid on behalf of Belgium and the Netherlands.
The country selected 11 host cities to be the venues for the matches of the 2018 World Cup and they are Moscow, St. Petersburg, Sochi, Kazan, Saransk, Kaliningrad, Volgograd, Rostov-on-Don, Nizhny Novgorod, Yekaterinburg and Samara.
The matches of the 2018 World Cup will be held between June 14 and July 15 at 12 stadiums located in the 11 above-mentioned cities across Russia. Two of the stadiums are located in the Russian capital of Moscow.