A new law criminalising serious offences committed abroad by Irish citizens or residents comes into effect today.

Under the act, Irish citizens who commit serious offences abroad such as rape, murder, sexual assault and manslaughter, will be liable to be prosecuted under Irish law.

Minister for Justice Charlie Flanagan said that the passing of the Criminal Law (Extraterritorial Jurisdiction) Act enabled Ireland to ratify the Istanbul Convention on combating violence against women last month.

Mr Flanagan said it signifies that Ireland is committed to its international obligations and that "we are steadfast in our efforts to combat violence against women and all forms of domestic violence.

"These new provisions can now be used to tackle violent crimes committed by Irish citizens and residents abroad."

"This act, in conjunction with other pieces of legislation such as the recently enacted Domestic Violence Act 2018, the Criminal Justice (Sexual Offences) Act 2017 and the Victims of Crime Act 2017, enable Ireland to effectively tackle these serious crimes at home and abroad."

The act was signed into law by President Michael D Higgins in March this year.