Ukrainians who are currently on the territory of the United States have been granted temporary protection from deportation and the right to obtain a work permit.

The administration of President Joe Biden announced the provision of temporary immigration benefits, providing protection from deportation and the issuance of work permits to tens of thousands of Ukrainians who are currently in the United States, but cannot return home due to the Russian invasion of Ukraine. This was reported by the Ministry of Internal Security.

This measure will allow Ukrainians who entered the United States before March 1, 2022, to stay in the country and work legally for 18 months, the ministry said in a statement.

Biden on Tuesday criticized Russian President Vladimir Putin and banned Russian air carriers from flying over U.S. airspace.

Ukrainian citizens will be granted exemption from deportation and access to work permits under a program known as Temporary Protected Status (TPS). The program provides protection to immigrants who cannot return to their countries due to extraordinary circumstances, including armed conflicts and natural disasters. Program participants get the opportunity to stay and work in the United States legally for a certain period of time.

“Russia’s deliberate and unprovoked attack on Ukraine has led to an ongoing war, senseless violence and the fact that Ukrainians are forced to seek refuge in other countries,” Interior Minister Alejandro Mayorkas said in a statement.

The U.S. Immigration and Customs Service on Thursday announced the termination of deportation flights to Ukraine due to the “ongoing humanitarian crisis.”

More than 1 million Ukrainians have fled Ukraine to neighboring Central European countries since Russia invaded Ukraine on February 24 in what Moscow calls a “special operation.”