Barnabas Fund, 5 January 2021
At least 24 people were killed, over 20 abducted, a church burnt and a pastor kidnapped by jihadi militants during two attacks on Christmas Eve in Nigeria.
On 24 December, armed militants raided the mainly Christian village of Pemi in Borno State, firing on villagers, killing eleven people, and setting fire to buildings.
Jihadists abducted at least 20 Christians in the region and singled out five to be lined up and shot in a second Christmas Eve attack in Adamawa State. In an online video released by the militants showing the killings, the murders are reportedly referred to as a “Christmas present”.
Many of the villagers fled during the attacks, and some are still missing at the time of writing. State authorities had warned of an increased risk of attacks during the Christmas period.
The breakaway Islamist terror group, ISWAP, is led by Abu Musab al-Barnawi and split from Boko Haram in 2015, partly due to the extreme brutality of Boko Haram’s leader Abubakar Shekau, and is active in north-east Nigeria.