MANILA - Senate President Vicente Sotto III on Tuesday extended the Senate's condolences to Bayan Muna Party-list Rep. Eufemia Culliamat who lost her daughter in an encounter with state forces over the weekend.
Culliamat's daughter, Jevilyn, was a medic for the Communist Party of the Philippines' armed wing, the New People's Army.
"Our thoughts and prayers are with you," Sotto said at the start of the Senate's third hearing on the red-tagging of lawmakers, including Culliamat.
"May your beautiful memories sustain and bring comfort to you in this difficult time," he said.
Senate Committee on National Defense chair Sen. Panfilo Lacson said the death of communist rebels should always be treated as a "tragic" even as they too are Filipinos.
"A dead NPA rebel and a dead soldier is only as bad and as tragic as a dead Filipino," said Lacson, who served as Philippine National Police (PNP) chief before entering politics.
"We see no difference at all except probably the cause they have fought and died for," he said.
The Senate has been investigating the military's allegations that several party-list lawmakers were members of the armed insurgency.
Culliamat and other representatives from the House's Makabayan bloc have denied the allegations.