A total of 69,301 students are currently behind bars in Turkey, according to the data from the Justice Ministry.
In response to a parliamentary question submitted by the main opposition Republican People’s Party (CHP), the ministry said students make up one-third of all prisoners in Turkey, where 197,297 inmates are in pre-trial detention or are serving out sentences.
The ministry said the number of inmates who are registered to a school is 69,301. The numbers were compiled from the latest available data, recorded at the end of 2016.
Out of the 69,301 students, 36,033 are registered in high schools or their equivalent or in undergraduate programs, while the remaining 33,268 are enrolled in distance education programs.
The number of students in prison skyrocketed 25-fold, from 2,766 in May 2013 to 69,301 in December 2016.
Turkey survived a military coup attempt on July 15 of last year, after which the government launched an all-out war against dissidents, especially the Gülen movement, the Kurdish minority and academics from various backgrounds.
More than 120,000 people have been detained and 55,000 have been put in pretrial detention since July 15, 2016. Those imprisoned include hundreds of academics, students, writers and journalists. (Turkey Purge)