Bellingcat: Russia shelled Ukraine’s territory at least 150 times in summer 2014
Large-scale shelling of Ukrainian positions from Russia’s territory began after the Ukrainian military launched an offensive in June 201418:42, 5 January 2020000
Open source In the summer of 2014, Russian artillery fired at least 149 times on Ukrainian territory. In 137 cases attacks were conducted from the territory of Russia, Bellingcat informs in its report “Putin’s Undeclared War. Russian Artillery Strikes in Ukraine in Summer 2014”
Large-scale shelling of Ukrainian positions from Russia’s territory began after the Ukrainian military launched an offensive in June 2014 with the aim of regaining control of the cities captured by the separatists.
Bellingcat counted 408 Russian-made shelling. 127 of them are outside the three-kilometer border zone.
Taking into account the total number of damaged sites, the Russian military released thousands of shells during the summer of 2014.
Bellingcat investigated a 22-kilometer-wide border in Ukraine in Donetsk and Luhansk regions. In Russia, investigators studied the entire territory of the Rostov region across the border from the area studied in Ukraine.
Analysts searched for locations of fire and firing positions manually using Google Earth, satellite imagery of various dates.
Using a special methodology, 305 sites were identified near the border of Russia or Ukraine that could potentially be used as firing positions. There were also 518 recorded fields damaged from shelling.
According to the authors, the Russians used howitzers 2A65 “Msta-B”. In addition to howitzers, rocket-propulsion systems, including Grad, were also used. MLRS traces were found in 88 positions.
A team of investigators claims that the specified number of shelling is the lowest threshold. There is no exact data.
“The Russian Armed Forces launched artillery bombardment from the territory of the Russian Federation no later than the beginning of July 2014. The frequency and scale of these attacks only increased until the signing of the Minsk Agreements in September 2014 … The shelling across the border preceded the Russian offensive operations south of Ilovaysk and east of Mariupol, the report said.
The main purpose of the investigation is to document the full scale of Russian artillery shelling of Ukrainian forces in the summer of 2014. According to investigators, the recorded shelling can be considered acts of aggression and open military action of Russia against Ukraine.