The general director of Erbil International Expos has said that due to the unrest across the Middle East, almost 45 Arab companies have withdrawn from the fourth International Exhibition for the Construction Industry in Erbil.
The expo currently underway in the Kurdistan Region's capital has exhibits from 200 companies from 17 different countries.
Latif Arf told AKnews the deteriorating political situation in Iraq and the rest of the Arab world has led the 45 companies, most of them Egyptian, cancel their participation in the expo.
The Kurdish official said initially 50 Arab companies withdrew but eventually five decided Erbil is safe and participated along other companies.
In northern Iraq, only one of the three provinces of Kurdistan, Sulaimaniya, witnessed public protests so far. The rallies there left six killed and over two hundred people wounded. Some buildings of the opposition and a ruling party were also attacked.
Abdullah Abdul-Rahman, the coordinator for Erbil international expos, blamed the withdrawal of the Arab companies on the “political unrest in their own countries, given the fact that most of those who withdrew were from Egypt.”