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    BRICS Should Resolve Middle East Conflicts – Lebanese Ex-Defense Minister

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    Lebanon's former defense minister insisted on BRICS' major role in resolving conflicts in the Middle East.

    MOSCOW (Sputnik), Svetlana Alexandrova — The work of the BRICS group in tackling conflicts in the Middle East may soon be able to rival the efforts of the United States, former Lebanese Minister of Defense Abdul Rahim Mourad said Wednesday.

    "BRICS member states can become worthy rivals of the United States and may be able to contribute to the settlement of the situation in the Middle East. We want the BRICS countries to become the main driving force in the region," Mourad said at a press-conference for representatives of the Lebanese National Assembly.

    Mourad added that the "old order of the sole reign of the United States in the Middle East had already outlived its usefulness."

    The United States has been engaged in various initiatives to attempt to resolve a number of conflicts in the region, including launching airstrikes against ISIL militants in Iraq and Syria, as well as urging Israel and Palestine to peacefully coexist side-by-side.

    On July 9, the BRICS group adopted the Ufa Declaration, outlining a common position on settling the Syrian Civil War and cooperation in fighting against the Islamic State terrorist group, among other points.

    BRICS is an association of five major developing economies, comprising Brazil, Russia, India, China, and South Africa, that represents almost three billion people and some 20 percent of global gross domestic product (GDP).

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    BRICS, Abdul Rahim Mourad, Lebanon, United States
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