Europe

Putin, Infantino launch World Cup volunteer program

  • Russian President Vladimir Putin, right, and FIFA President Gianni Infantino shake hands at the opening ceremony of World Cup Volunteers Programme ahead of the 2018 football tournament in Moscow, Russia, Wednesday, June 1, 2016. Russian President Vladimir Putin and FIFA President Gianni Infantino attend launch of World Cup Volunteers Programme ahead of the 2018 football tournament. (AP Photo/Ivan Sekretarev)

    Russian President Vladimir Putin, right, and FIFA President Gianni Infantino shake hands at the opening ceremony of World Cup Volunteers Programme ahead of the 2018 football tournament in Moscow, Russia, Wednesday, June 1, 2016. Russian President Vladimir Putin and FIFA President Gianni Infantino attend launch of World Cup Volunteers Programme ahead of the 2018 football tournament. (AP Photo/Ivan Sekretarev)  (The Associated Press)

  • Russia volunteers attend the opening  ceremony of World Cup Volunteers Programme ahead of the 2018 football tournament in Moscow, Russia, Wednesday, June 1, 2016. Russian President Vladimir Putin and FIFA President Gianni Infantino attend launch of World Cup Volunteers Programme ahead of the 2018 football tournament. (AP Photo/Ivan Sekretarev)

    Russia volunteers attend the opening ceremony of World Cup Volunteers Programme ahead of the 2018 football tournament in Moscow, Russia, Wednesday, June 1, 2016. Russian President Vladimir Putin and FIFA President Gianni Infantino attend launch of World Cup Volunteers Programme ahead of the 2018 football tournament. (AP Photo/Ivan Sekretarev)  (The Associated Press)

  • Russia volunteers attend the opening  ceremony of World Cup Volunteers Programme ahead of the 2018 football tournament in Moscow, Russia, Wednesday, June 1, 2016. Russian President Vladimir Putin and FIFA President Gianni Infantino attend launch of World Cup Volunteers Programme ahead of the 2018 football tournament. (AP Photo/Ivan Sekretarev)

    Russia volunteers attend the opening ceremony of World Cup Volunteers Programme ahead of the 2018 football tournament in Moscow, Russia, Wednesday, June 1, 2016. Russian President Vladimir Putin and FIFA President Gianni Infantino attend launch of World Cup Volunteers Programme ahead of the 2018 football tournament. (AP Photo/Ivan Sekretarev)  (The Associated Press)

Russian President Vladimir Putin and FIFA President Gianni Infantino have launched the volunteer program for the 2018 World Cup in Russia.

Wednesday's ceremony at an open-air theater in Moscow marks the start of recruitment of the 15,000 volunteers who will work at the World Cup and 5,000 for next year's Confederations Cup.

Putin says Russia will finish construction of all 12 stadiums on time despite recent reports of delays to some arenas.

Infantino says the "world will witness a welcoming Russia, a warm Russia, a Russia that is open to the world" at the tournament.