On December 24, Boko Haram fighters attacked, killing at least 11 people, abducting seven people, including a pastor, and burning down a church. They also looted 10 homes and stole medical supplies from a hospital, before setting it on fire, as well.
Like Christians around the world, believers in northeast Nigeria’s Borno state’s Pemi village were also in the midst of last-minute preparations to celebrate the birth of Christ when the Islamic terrorist group Boko Haram reigned down terror on Christmas Eve.
A local leader told AFP News that fighters rode in on trucks and motorbikes from the Sambisa Forest, opening fire indiscriminately on the predominately Christian village.
“Boko Haram attacked Pemi village, killed seven people and abducted another seven, including a pastor,” Kachallah Usman, secretary of the Chibok local government area, told CNN on Friday.
Militia leader Abwaku Kabu said the group looted food supplies that were meant to be distributed to residents to celebrate Christmas—food that was likely desperately needed in a country where starving Christians have been denied COVID-19 government relief, according to Open Doors.
A few days before, security officials had warned an attack on Christmas was likely.
In what is being noted as a systematic direct war against Christianity in Nigeria, Pastors, Christian Leaders and Seminarians are either being kidnapped or killed every week.
Christians in Nigeria have been the target of many attacks by the vicious Boko Haram jihadist Islamist terrorists, herdsmen attacks and many other kidnappings in recent times.
Nigeria ranks as the 12th worst country in the world on Open Doors USA’s 2020 World Watch List of countries where Christians are most severely persecuted. Nigeria was in December, listed in the U.S. State Department’s special watch list of countries that tolerate or engage in severe violations of religious freedom due to the “lack of effective government response and the lack of judicial cases being brought forward in that country”.
An earlier report this year revealed that around 620 Christians were killed in the African country by Islamic militants during the first five months of 2020 alone.