The United States joined with several of its allies Wednesday to warn Yemen Houthis against further attacks on vessels in the Red Sea, labelling recent Houthi attacks “illegal, unacceptable, and profoundly destabilizing.”

Houthis have launched numerous attacks on commercial vessels transiting the Red Sea since the outbreak of the Hamas-Israel war last year, and in light of ongoing attacks, including a significant escalation over the past week targeting commercial vessels, with missiles, small boats, and attempted hijackings, US and its allies issued warning to the Houthis against further attacks.

The United States, Australia, Bahrain, Belgium, Canada, Denmark, Germany, Italy, Japan, the Netherlands, New Zealand and the United Kingdom all joined in issuing the stark warning.

The statement comes two days after Iran moved a warship to the Red Sea, which came after the U.S. sank three Houthi ships in the area.

The full joint statement is posted in full below:

“Ongoing Houthi attacks in the Red Sea are illegal, unacceptable, and profoundly destabilizing. There is no lawful justification for intentionally targeting civilian shipping and naval vessels.

“Attacks on vessels, including commercial vessels, using unmanned aerial vehicles, small boats, and missiles, including the first use of anti-ship ballistic missiles against such vessels, are a direct threat to the freedom of navigation that serves as the bedrock of global trade in one of the world’s most critical waterways.

“These attacks threaten innocent lives from all over the world and constitute a significant international problem that demands collective action. 

“Nearly 15 percent of global seaborne trade passes through the Red Sea, including 8 percent of global grain trade, 12 percent of seaborne-traded oil and 8 percent of the world’s liquefied natural gas trade.

“International shipping companies continue to reroute their vessels around the Cape of Good Hope, adding significant cost and weeks of delay to the delivery of goods, and ultimately jeopardizing the movement of critical food, fuel, and humanitarian assistance throughout the world.

“Let our message now be clear: we call for the immediate end of these illegal attacks and release of unlawfully detained vessels and crews. 

“The Houthis will bear the responsibility of the consequences should they continue to threaten lives, the global economy, and free flow of commerce in the region’s critical waterways.

“We remain committed to the international rules-based order and are determined to hold malign actors accountable for unlawful seizures and attacks.”