During the last week of May, thousands of Iranians demonstrated in the northwestern city of Tabriz, and the previous week there were protests at universities in five cities. The protests were triggered by the official government newspaper - the Islamic Republic News Agency's Iran - publishing a cartoon which depicts a boy repeating "cockroach" in Persian before a giant bug in front of him asks "What?" in Azeri.
Azeri-Iranians - who make up approximately one-quarter of the country's population - were particularly offended by the cartoon. These disturbances come at a bad time for the Iranian government, which is stressing national unity in the face of international concern over its nuclear program. Read More.