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.
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.
A few days before, security officials had warned an attack on Christmas was likely.
Pemi village is only 20 miles from Chibok where the Islamic terrorist group abducted more than 200 schoolgirls in 2014. Nkeki Mutah, chairman of the Chibok community in Abuja, told CNN he believes Pemi village was specifically targeted because it is a Christian-majority community.
“Since 2018, virtually every two weeks, Boko Haram has been attacking Chibok, killing and abducting people,” Mutah said. “They want to wipe Chibok out from the surface of the Earth.”