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Guillermo Lasso: Ecuador's President dissolves parliament

Ecuadorean President Guillermo Lasso has dissolved the opposition-controlled parliament amid an impeachment trial.

He had been accused of turning a blind eye to embezzlement and was facing an imminent vote that could have ousted him from office.

Mr Lasso, a conservative, said the charges were politically motivated.

He will now have up to six months to govern by decree - without the input from lawmakers - before fresh general elections are held.

The conservative president issued the decree which disbands the National Assembly "due to a grave political crisis and national commotion".

He also instructed the electoral authorities to organise early elections.

The move comes just hours after Mr Lasso offered an impassioned defence during the first day of his impeachment trial, in which he stood accused of having been aware of an embezzlement scheme involving a state-run oil transport company.


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