Nope--still no Chinese airfield at Triton Island
Nope--still no Chinese airfield at Triton Island
Contrary to earlier reports, the new PRC construction on Triton Island is almost certainly not a runway. In fact, China probably has no such plans for Triton.
DEC 5, 2023
The China Coast Guard: Wolf in a White Hull
China’s Coast Guard is using the cover of the respected white-hull to carry out offensive actions in maritime East Asia. The world’s coast guards need to engage to counter this malign behavior.
NOV 28, 2023
Gray Zone Tactics Playbook: Intrusive Patrolling
China Coast Guard vessels regularly and visibly conduct intrusive patrols deep within the exclusive economic zones of neighboring countries, an activity meant to establish a continuous presence and gradually normalize Chinese jurisdiction over areas granted to its neighbors under international law.
NOV 22, 2023
Chinese ships return to Sabina Shoal
Satellite imagery from November 18th indicates that 12-14 Chinese fishing/militia ships are now working at Sabina Shoal after months of a reduced presence.
NOV 18, 2023

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What is SeaLight?

SeaLight is committed to lighting up the maritime gray zone so that bullies and criminals can no longer hide in the darkness while they harass law-abiding fisherfolk; destroy the marine environment and fish stocks; prevent legitimate exploration and survey activities; and violate international law and other countries' sovereign rights.
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Latest Resources

South China Sea-related materials, maps, media, databases, and more. Collected and curated in our searchable research library.
South China Sea NewsWire
Published DEC 4, 2023
News aggregator for South China Sea-related stories.
NUS Satellite Research Project on Insular Geographic Features in the South China Sea
Published SEP 3, 2023
This National University of Singapore (NUS) project involved a satellite image-based mapping of all visible insular geographic features in the SCS, including natural and man-made features. Note that the project ended in 2016, and therefore lacks imagery and descriptions of much of the infrastructure on the features.
AIS What is it?
Published SEP 3, 2023
Infographic from environmental NGO Oceana explaining the basics of AIS.
West Philippine Sea - An Online Resource of the Foreign Service Institute Philippines
Published JUL 12, 2023
This site disseminates information on key Philippine maritime and territorial concerns.
SeaLight 333 Ep. 1 - Philippines v. China, the 2016 Arbitral Tribunal Award
Published JUL 11, 2023
A short video explainer about why the Philippines took China to international arbitration, why it won, and why it was such a big deal.
China’s Man-Made South China Sea Islands Like You’ve Never Seen Them Before
Published JUL 2, 2023
New aerial images of Beijing’s manmade islands in the South China Sea provide greater detail about their infrastructure and defenses.
The Maritime Counterinsurgency Project
Published JUL 2, 2023
Maritime COIN aims to shine a bright light on the PRC’s illegal activities to harass, intimidate, and bully other states in the South China Sea region into accepting China’s excessive claims to the entire South China Sea. The project will also develop strategic, operational, tactical, and force structure recommendations on how to thwart China’s illegal efforts.
A Primer on the Escalating Tensions in the South China Sea
Published JUL 1, 2023
Ray Powell, a former U.S. Air Force colonel, tracks the maneuvers of ships and other vessels operating in the South China Sea on a daily basis as the team lead for Stanford University's Project Myoushu. Ray joins Eric & Cobus from Palo Alto to break down the different territorial claims and why this burgeoning maritime conflict is so incredibly important. Podcast is available here:
How to Solve the South China Sea Disputes
Published JUL 1, 2023
Bill Hayton outlines how claimants could overcome their disagreements by disaggregating claims and employing a ‘Track Two Tribunal.’
Countering Coercion in Maritime Asia: The Theory and Practice of Gray Zone Deterrence
Published JUL 1, 2023
This study examines recent incidents of gray zone coercion in maritime Asia and draws lessons for policymakers.
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In The News

Our finds on the latest articles and information from outside of the SeaLight team.
No China Backlash, So Far: The Philippines’ New Assertive Transparency Policy in the South China Sea
Published DEC 6, 2023
The Philippines’ assertive transparency in the South China Sea has so far not generated negative economic repercussions for the country.
Over 100 Chinese Militia Boats Challenge US Ally in Potential Flashpoint
Published DEC 4, 2023
More than 100 ships from China's paramilitary maritime militia have been accused of "swarming" disputed ground in the South China Sea claimed by both Beijing and Manila.
Philippines, France agree to ramp up defence ties
Published DEC 4, 2023
The boost to bilateral defence cooperation includes seeking authority from leaders of both countries to negotiate a status of visiting forces agreement. The Philippines has been ramping up military ties with several countries in a bid to counter China’s growing assertiveness in the South China Sea.
On a Tiny Island in the Middle of Nowhere, 250 People Are Fending Off China
Published DEC 4, 2023
Wall Street Journal profile of Thitu Island, which Filipinos call Pag-Asa.
Philippines builds new coast guard station on island in South China Sea
Published DEC 1, 2023
The Philippines has built a new coast guard station on the contested island of Thitu in the South China Sea, boosting its ability to monitor movements of Chinese vessels and aircraft in the busy disputed waterway.
Marcos' courting of U.S. support is unsettling his ASEAN neighbors
Published DEC 1, 2023
Instead of gaslighting the Philippines for standing its ground, key members like Singapore, Indonesia and Malaysia should quietly appreciate, if not actively support, the Philippines' newfound courage in resisting China's bullying. If ASEAN states do not stand up for themselves, the region really does risk turning into a playground of the superpowers.
Viet Nam, Japan elevate ties to comprehensive strategic partnership
Published NOV 28, 2023
The agreement was made by Vietnamese President Vo Van Thuong, who is on a four-day official visit to Japan, and Japanese Prime Minister Kishida Fumio, during their summit meeting in Tokyo, Japan on September 27.
Philippines launches joint sea, air patrols with U.S. military
Published NOV 21, 2023
The militaries of the Philippines and the United States launched joint patrols on Tuesday in waters near Taiwan, officials of the Southeast Asian nation said, a move likely to fan further tension with China.
Philippines Seeks Greater Regional Cooperation on South China Sea Disputes
Published NOV 21, 2023
President Marcos said that his administration has reached out to Malaysia and Vietnam at a time of growing friction in contested waters.
U.S. advises Philippines on warship repair on China-claimed atoll
Published NOV 22, 2023
The U.S. has begun advising the Philippines on the repair of a World War II-era warship grounded on an atoll in the South China Sea, people familiar with the matter told Nikkei, demonstrating Washington's commitment to protecting Manila's maritime rights in the face of growing tensions with China.
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JUL 12, 2023
SeaLight is live! Let's light up the maritime gray zone.
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