TBILISI, DFWatch – A group of experts from the OSCE has arrived in Georgia to study the situation before the election.

Deputy Foreign Affairs Minister Nino Kalandadze says the experts, who come from the Office for Democratic Institutions and Human Rights (ODIHR), will stay until June 16.

They are here after an official invitation.

The delegation will have meetings with the government, the opposition and various groups.

Parliamentary elections are to be conducted in October, but the exact date is not yet set.

In the beginning of 2012, representatives of civil society in Georgia asked the government to invite long-term international observer missions to Georgia, to monitor the situation during the whole election year, not just the last six weeks before the election, which is the usual duration of long term observer mission.

A month later, President Saakashvili and the foreign ministry sent out invitations to different international observers, including OSCE’s ODIHR.

“This is important for us because we think it is of great importance how democratic and transparent the elections in October will be. In addition, it is important for this mission to have answers to all questions without restrictions and accordingly to prepare important recommendations, which will be important to us as well,” Kalandadze said.