The US sees the decision by Honduras' disputed de-facto leader Roberto Micheletti to step down during elections as a "positive step," a senior US State Department official said.
The official, who spoke to reporters on Friday on condition of anonymity, also reaffirmed Washington's intention to support the Nov 29 elections, even if many of the countries in the hemisphere have declared they will not recognise the results.
On Thursday, Micheletti said he would give up power temporarily, from Wednesday to Dec 2.
The US official noted that his possible return date Dec 2, coincides with plans by the Honduran legislature to consider reinstitution of ousted President Manuel Zelaya, who has been holed up in the Brazilian embassy for weeks after his unceremonious ouster and exile in June.
The US official said that Micheletti's absence from power during the elections "could change the dynamics" of the situation and represented a "positive step that needs to be implemented".
It had the "potential to open up political space," the official said.
The Organisation of American States, including the US, have refused to recognise Micheletti as the president.