Overseas activists are meeting today in New York to discuss efforts to secure the release of dissident Wang Bingzhang. A source who helped Wang sneak into the mainland to set up an opposition party said efforts would be made to contact Wei Jingsheng but no concrete plans had yet been made to involve the high-profile dissident. Fu Shenqi, a veteran dissident living in New York, said yesterday: 'The support of Wei Jingsheng is welcomed and we will try to reach him.' Five major groups would meet in New York, Mr Fu said. Wang, 50, was detained in Bengbu in central Anhui on Friday. Another dissident, maths teacher Wang Tingjin, 43, who met Wang Bingzhang, was also detained although he was not involved in the new party, sources said. Reports said Wang Bingzhang, who reportedly entered the mainland from Macau as Qi Xin, holds a US green card. Other dissidents said Wang held a US residency permit, but was not a citizen. Regarding help from Washington, Mr Fu said: 'We welcome the involvement of the American Government, but do not want to have high expectations in this respect. 'Wang Bingzhang is mentally prepared to go to jail. He is willing to give everything for China's pro-democracy movement.' Mr Fu believed that, for now, Wang's detention would delay plans for a secret mainland meeting of overseas and domestic dissidents that was to have taken place at the end of this month. 'The original time and place of the meeting will be changed,' he said. The meeting was scheduled to mark the launch of a domestic political group called the Justice Party, said Mr Fu. 'Prior to this, all democracy activist groups were based overseas. The aim this time was to set up a domestic base that would be linked to overseas support.' Mr Fu refused to say what will be discussed when the meeting is held. Although he declined to confirm how many domestic dissidents Wang had met on his travels to Beijing, Shanghai, Nanjing and Anhui, he said he started meeting people after his arrival in the mainland on January 23. The number was significantly more than the two or three previously reported to have been questioned, he said. 'Mr Wang does not only represent the force of a single man, he has a broad base of support.' Wang was sent to a Canadian university in 1978 for postgraduate studies in medicine and never returned to China. In 1982, he organised the Alliance for Democratic China - the first overseas dissident group - and then published a magazine called China Spring. His detention mirrors the case of prominent human rights activist Harry Wu, a US citizen who was arrested sneaking in to China in 1995 to collect information on the mainland's penal colonies. Mr Wu was expelled the same year.