Department of Homeland Security
Department of Homeland SecurityiStock

Ukrainian citizens residing in the United States will be granted temporary protected status by the Department of Homeland Security (DHS), said DHS Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas on Thursday.

"We condemn Vladimir Putin’s unprovoked attack against the Ukrainian people," Mayorkas said in a video posted to Twitter. "Our hearts stand with the Ukrainian people, who are suffering so much tragedy and so much loss."

He added: “We in the Department of Homeland Security are acting in support of them, not just in support of the Ukrainian people in Ukraine but also those present in the United States.”

The temporary protected status designation will be valid for 18 months, Homeland Security Today reported.

"I’m proud to announce that we will be providing temporary protected status, TPS, to those Ukrainian nationals who are present in the United States as of March 1 of this year," Mayorkas said. "Our relief, our hearts are with them, and we will do everything in our power to support them."

Temporary protected status is given to foreign nationals residing in the U.S. from countries that are in the midst of either war, an environmental catastrophe or an extraordinary temporary issue.

U.S. President Joe Biden put Mayorkas in charge of the domestic response to the Russian invasion of Ukraine in late February.