Sri Lanka has signed a one-year $180K contract with Madison Group to assist its ministry of external affairs in "creating a situational awareness of current affairs" in the island state off the coast of India.

The Associated Press reported today that a new United Nations probe into alleged war crimes during the waning months of the nation's long-running battle with the Tamil Tigers rebel group "will intensify  international pressure on the government and could probe responsibility of senior Sri Lankan officials with US times."

Estimated 40K civilians died from government bombing in 2009 during the final five months of the conflict.

Sri Lanka's UN ambassador Palitha Kokona, who was foreign secretary near the end of the war, said the probe is "utterly uncalled for," adding, "It's like this poor third-world country being punished in an unforgiving manner for having defeated a terrorist group."

Madison Group founder Robb Watters leads the five-member Sri Lanka government relations team. He's been a Congressional Republican policy advisor and counselor to the Commerce Dept. and US Trade Representative.

The firm's $15K fee is "subject to increase based on performance" says the contract that became effective June 1.

Madison Group joins Beltway Strategies on Sri Lanka's roster of government affairs shops.

Beltway of Redondo Beach, CA, does not yet have a formal contract with Sri Lanka. It anticipates a six-month arrangement.