Russia not separatists fired at least on 149 times attacks against Ukraine in the summer of 2014. This is stated in their latest report by Bellingcat, the open source and social media investigation team. This report attempts to document the full scale of the Russian artillery attacks against Ukraine in summer 2014.
The report also states that the attacks by the Russian military were decisive in warmongering in the East of Ukraine, aimed to prevent Ukraine from restoring its control over its territory.
“While the Russian government still insists that the war in Eastern Ukraine is a civil war, the available evidence documents the absolute opposite. Their support has included military equipment and supplies, but also the participation of active Russian servicemen and military units, all of which is now well documented. Given the repeated Russian government denials despite the operation of their servicemen - without identifiable markings - inside Ukraine, the Russian military operation in Eastern Ukraine is considered to be a part of a 'hybrid war’,” states the report.
This report also concludes that Russian artillery attacks against Ukraine were not a rare and localized event before the downing of MH17.
These findings also imply that the Russian Armed Forces were already taking an active role in the Ukrainian war before the downing of MH17. The scale and the location of the different firing positions and target areas also precludes an interpretation of the attacks as acts of rogue military commanders in support of the 'separatists' inside Ukraine. There was a clear target selection, Ukrainian camps in the border area, and strategy behind these attacks.