On Thursday, a representative for the musician, 34, shared a statement obtained by PEOPLE in response to his estranged wife’s lawsuit that alleges he is not letting the couple’s two kids — Willa, 3, and a 14-month-old daughter — return to England.
“After multiple conversations with Sophie, Joe initiated divorce proceedings in Florida, as Florida is the appropriate jurisdiction for the case. Sophie was aware that Joe was going to file for divorce. The Florida Court has already entered an order that restricts both parents from relocating the children. Sophie was served with this order on September 6, 2023, more than two weeks ago,” the statement reads.
“Joe and Sophie had a cordial meeting this past Sunday in New York, when Sophie came to New York to be with the kids. They have been with her since that meeting. Joe’s impression of the meeting was that they had reached an understanding that they would work together towards an amicable co-parenting setup.”
The statement alleges that less than 24 hours after the “amicable co-parenting setup” was agreed upon, “Sophie advised that she wanted to take the children permanently to the UK. Thereafter, she demanded via this filing that Joe hand over the children’s passports so that she could take them out of the country immediately. If he complies, Joe will be in violation of the Florida Court order.”
Never miss a story — sign up for PEOPLE’s free daily newsletter to stay up-to-date on the best of what PEOPLE has to offer, from juicy celebrity news to compelling human interest stories.
The statement asserts that the musician is “seeking shared parenting with the kids so that they are raised by both their mother and father, and is, of course, also okay with the kids being raised both in the U.S. and the UK,” but also alleges that the children “have spent the vast majority of their lives in the U.S.”
“This is an unfortunate legal disagreement about a marriage that is sadly ending. When language like ‘abduction’ is used, it is misleading at best, and a serious abuse of the legal system at worst. The children were not abducted,” the statement continues.
“After being in Joe’s care for the past three months at the agreement of both parties, the children are currently with their mother,” the statement continues. “Sophie is making this claim only to move the divorce proceedings to the UK and to remove the children from the U.S. permanently.”
“Joe has already disavowed any and all statements purportedly made on his behalf that were disparaging of Sophie. They were made without his approval and are not consistent with his views. His wish is that Sophie reconsider her harsh legal position and move forward in a more constructive and private manner. His only concern is the well-being of his children,” the statement concludes.
On Sept. 21, Turner, 27, filed a lawsuit against her estranged husband that requested her two kids be returned to England.
The suit against Jonas called for “the immediate return of children wrongfully removed or wrongfully retained,” with Turner’s legal team asserting the “wrongful retention” began on Sept. 20.
Turner claims that she and the musician agreed to declare England their “forever home” in conversations that took place over Christmas 2022 as they prepped for the year ahead.
The singer and the former Game of Thrones star tied the knot in 2019 after nearly three years of dating.
Jonas filed for a dissolution of marriage from the actress after four years of marriage in September, documents obtained by PEOPLE confirmed. The filing claimed “the marriage between the parties is irretrievably broken.”
At the time, the documents claimed that the children had been living with their father as of late.
“A parenting plan should be established, which addressed all parenting issues and contains a timesharing schedule providing for frequent and continuing contact with both parties,” the filing continued. “The children have been residing with their father in Miami and other locations throughout the United States.”
Shortly after Jonas filed for divorce, a source told PEOPLE that the former couple’s kids have “more support” living with the singer amid their split.
“She has been shooting which is why the kids have been with Joe. It’s just been easier because she’s been working for the kids to be with him because there’s some more support at home and on the road with his family. It’s something they both agreed was best.”