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The abortion policy has proven controversial within Amnesty International, with some activists worried that the shift will make the human rights group’s work harder not only with Catholic groups, but in conservative parts of Latin America, Asia and the Muslim world.

The Irish chapter of Amnesty International announced over the weekend that it would not promote the group’s new abortion policy, citing Irish laws against abortion.

But Gabriele Eminente, a top official from Amnesty’s Italian chapter, said he did not expect to lose members because of the abortion vote, despite the Vatican’s strong opposition.

Amnesty’s Miss Brown said the Mexico vote in favor of the new policy was overwhelming, although no final vote was taken. She said e-mail to the organization since the vote had also been mostly favorable to the change.