(Clearwisdom.net September 17th) On September 12, 2003, "Car Tour Around the U.S. to Rescue Charles Li" arrived in Philadelphia, 30 days after setting out from California. The practitioners held a press conference in front of the Liberty Bell--a place symbolizing independence and freedom in the U.S.--and called for the rescue of American citizen Dr. Charles Li, who has been illegally detained in a Chinese jail for practicing Falun Gong and spreading the truth about Falun Gong.
Mr. Chen Gang, who came to America from China in mid-July to reunite with his family in New Jersey, recounted his 18-month imprisonment in the Tuanhe Forced Labor Camp, Beijing, China for practicing Falun Gong. He suffered all kinds of brutal tortures, including beatings, electric shock, and sleep deprivation for more than twelve days in a row. He said, "Because I have endured physical and mental torture in a labor camp, I can imagine the persecution Charles is enduring."
|Mr. William Timm from California in front of the Liberty Bell, calling for the release of Charles Li||Mr. Chen Gang, who was detained in a Chinese labor camp for 18 months, is being interviewed|
|Tourists sign their names for the rescue of Charles Li||ABC TV station comes to the Liberty Bell to cover the activity|
When talking about why he participated in this car tour, William Timm from California said, "I've practiced Falun Gong for about three years, and I feel quite good. I'm sad at seeing so many people suffer persecution for practicing Falun Gong. The situation of human rights in China is rather poor. The U.S. has laws to protect human rights and freedom of beliefs. I feel that as an American, I should step forward. It is very important to ensure Charles Li's safe return to the U.S. soon."
The press conference faced the Liberty Bell, with the center of the newly completed U.S. Constitution in the background. The banners and photo display boards reading "Rescue Charles Li" were so prominent that many passersby were attracted to come for Dafa truth-clarifying flyers and sign their names. The U.S. Constitution protects citizens' freedom of beliefs. Mr. Timm stated, "What moved me the most is that many people that we had never seen before took the initiative to sign their names and look at our photo display boards to learn the facts. Some even helped collect signatures." He said they would deliver the signatures collected through their car tour to the U.S. State Department.
American citizen Dr. Charles Li was arrested in January this year when he traveled to China, and is currently detained in Nanjing Prison.
The activity attracted attention from the local media. ABC-6 TV station, FOX TV station, WB-17 TV station, NTD TV station, KYW-1600 radio station, the World Daily and the Epoch Times came to cover the event.