Germany has offered assistance to Sri Lanka in its investigation of alleged atrocities during its civil war, in which thousands of people died.

Foreign Minister Frank-Walter Steinmeier made the offer in a meeting with his Sri Lankan counterpart on Tuesday.

Last week, the United Nations human rights chief recommended that Sri Lanka set up a special hybrid court that would include foreign judges and investigators to examine the alleged atrocities, saying Sri Lanka's own courts are not yet ready to carry out a fair judicial process.

Sri Lankan Foreign Minister Mangala Samaraweera said then that the country wants to conduct its own investigation but would accept some outside technical support.

Steinmeier said Tuesday that the extent of international assistance should be deliberated at the U.N. Human Rights Council.