Reforms 'Irreversible' Tsvangirai Tells British PM

London – Prime Minister Morgan Tsvangirai of Zimbabwe told his British counterpart in London on Monday that his country was engaged in "an irreversible process" of consolidating democratic values.\r\n

Speaking to journalists after meeting Gordon Brown at the prime minister’s office at 10 Downing Street, Tsvangirai said he was "conscious of the shortcomings in the fulfilment of the benchmarks we have set ourselves…"

But he insisted that the unity government into which he has entered with President Robert Mugabe has begun to institute political and economic reforms. "Although this is not a perfect arrangement… it’s a workable arrangement," he said.

He also condemned the police beatings and arrests of women protesting in Harare and Bulawayo last week under the auspices of the activist group, Women and Men of Zimbabwe Arise (WOZA).

Brown was the latest in a succession of Western leaders Tsvangirai has met during a tour of Europe and the United States this month. He has held talks with government leaders in the Netherlands, the United States, Germany, Sweden, Norway, Denmark and at the European Union headquarters in Belgium.

President Barack Obama of the U.S. announced a U.S. $73 million aid package when Tsvangirai visited the White House, and Chancellor Angela Merkel of Germany offered 20 million euros ($28 million).

Prime Minister Brown followed this up on Monday by announcing an increase in British aid to 60 million pounds ($100 million), five million pounds ($8 million) of which is new money for food security and educational supplies and textbooks.