A bill that criminalises psychological elements of domestic abuse has been passed in the Dáil.

In his concluding remarks, Minister for Justice Charlie Flanagan said: "This is one of the most important pieces of legislation before the Oireachtas this year.

"We all know that domestic violence can have devastating physical, emotional, mental and financial consequences for victims, as well as for society as a whole," he said.

"For too long domestic violence has been seen primarily as physical abuse. The new offence of coercive control sends a clear consistent message that non-violent control in an intimate relationship is criminal and well be treated as such," the minister added.

"The effect of such behaviour may be as harmful to victims as physical abuse because it is an abuse of the unique trust associated with an intimate relationship.

"Explicitly capturing this in this piece of legislation will also help victims identify that the behaviour they are suffering is wrong and encourage them to report it and cause perpetrators to rethink their behaviour."

Fianna Fáil justice spokesperson Jim O'Callaghan welcomed the bill.

However he said that in order to deal with the problem of domestic violence, or any violence, we have got to approach the problem of alcohol consumption and alcohol abuse and drug abuse, because when you compare them and analyse those acts of violence, a high percentage are perpetrated by people who have taken drugs or are in a state of drunkenness.

Sinn Féin TD Gerry Adams also welcomed the bill and said "it is a very significant piece of legislation which was urgently needed.

"One stark statistic highlights its importance. One in three women has experienced psychological abuse by a partner, while 15% of women experience physical or sexual violence by a partner."

Safe Ireland, the national social change agency working to end domestic violence, welcomed the passing of the bill which it says is "robust, visionary and cutting edge in its response to the needs of women and children needing protection and safety."

The Domestic Violence Bill 2017 will now move back to the Seanad before it proceeds to President Michael D Higgins to be signed into law.