The United Nations Security Council is expected to vote, possibly as early as late Wednesday, on a resolution calling on the Iranian proxy group the Houthis to halt its attacks on cargo ships in the Red Sea.

“These attacks are unlawful reckless and escalatory,” US National Security Council spokesman John Kirby told reporters in Washington on Wednesday, adding that the resolution “unequivocally demands that the Houthis cease these attacks.”

The US is one of 15-members of the UNSC and authored the resolution along with Japan, which also has a seat on the council.

The US warned Iran and the Houthis of “consequences” if they continue to target Red Sea shipping routes, after American and British naval forces shot down 21 drones and missiles launched at them by the Yemeni-based rebels on Tuesday.

“If this continues there will be consequences for the Houthis actions,” US Secretary of State Antony Blinken told reporters, as he prepared to leave Bahrain on Wednesday night, on his trip across the Middle East, the fourth in the last three months, to try to calm tensions.

“We have also repeatedly tried to make clear to Iran that the support – as other countries have as well – they are providing to the Houthis, including for these actions, needs to stop.

“It’s not in their interest to have the conflict escalate,” Blinken said, adding that “we are not the only ones who have sent that message to Iran.”

Bahrain is part of a coalition of some 20 countries, including Great Britain and the US, which through Operation Prosperity Guardian are working to preserve those shipping routes.
Blinken: Int’l community must come together to respond

“Thousands of ships have had to divert” and “take longer routes” which is harming the global supply chain and raising the prices of commodities, he said. Then there are the 25 hostages the Houthis seized as part of their attacks on ships in the last months, he added.

“This represents a clear threat to the interests of countries around the world and it’s important that the international community come together to respond, “Blinken said.

He issued a similar warning while speaking with reporters in Tel Aviv on Tuesday.

In Washington, Kirby said, “We’re going to do everything we need to do to protect shipping in the Red Sea.”

British Defense Secretary Grant Shapps said it was the largest attack in the area by the militants to date as the three-month-long war between Israel and Hamas in Gaza spills over into other parts of the Middle East.

“This is an unsustainable situation,” Shapps told reporters, adding, “Watch this space,” with regards to further possible action by Britain and its international partners.

“This cannot continue and cannot be allowed to continue.”

Source » jpost