The Americas

Several buses torched in Rio; police suspect in retaliation

Several public buses have been touched in Brazil's Rio de Janeiro.

Images on Globo News show buses burning alongside a highway in the northern part of the city. Traffic was snarled and black smoke filled the air.

It wasn't immediately clear how many buses were burned or if there were injuries.

Military police spokesman Maj. Ivan Blaz tells Globo that a group of ski-masked bandits are suspected of igniting the buses Tuesday, possibly in retaliation for a police operation.

Rio has frequent bursts of violence.

Drug traffickers frequently have shootouts over territory in many of the hundreds of slums in the city. Shootouts between military police and drug traffickers are also common.

Several other buses were torched during a protest over pension reform on Friday.