At least 612,347 people faced investigations on accusations “of founding, leading or being a member of terror groups” in Turkey from 2016 to 2017, according to Justice Ministry data.

The number of people being investigated over terror accusations was 155,014 in 2016, more than four times higher than the corresponding figure in 2015. The number grew bigger in 2017 when 457,423 people faced such investigations.

Prosecutors found no need to prosecute further in the cases of 80,839 out of 612,347 people.

Data belonging to the year 2018 have yet to be released.

Academic Yaman Akdeniz who called attention to the massive number of investigations on his personal Twitter account with a graph he had prepared, compared Turkey to US and the UK where the number of legal similar cases remained limited even in the aftermath of the Sept 11, 2001 terrorist attacks.

Turkey survived a military coup attempt on July 15 that killed over 240 people and wounded more than a thousand others. Already increasingly-authoritarian Turkish government has leveled up its crackdown against its critics since then with broad interpretation of its anti-terror laws.

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