Biden to meet with Ecuador's Lasso at White House next week

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FILE - President Joe Biden, center, sits beside Ecuador President Guillermo Lasso, left, during a leaders retreat and working luncheon with heads of state and government at the Summit of the Americas, June 10, 2022, in Los Angeles. Biden will meet this coming Monday, Dec. 19, with Lasso at the White House. (AP Photo/Evan Vucci, File)

WASHINGTON – President Joe Biden will meet with the president of Ecuador, Guillermo Lasso, at the White House this coming Monday.

White House National Security Council spokesman John Kirby told reporters on a Friday call that Lasso has been a key ally, speaking out against Russia's invasion of Ukraine and granting temporary protected status to migrants coming from Venezuela.

“We’re obviously invested in Ecuador’s success,” Kirby said.

The White House said Biden and Lasso plan to use their meeting to stress the importance of democratic institutions and of improving regional economic partnerships.

Lasso's visit comes at Biden's invitation, which was extended during a Tuesday trip to Ecuador by Chris Dodd, the former Connecticut senator and Biden's special adviser for the Americas.