Bon Jovi have been banned from China.

The 'Always' rockers were due to play their first-ever shows in Shanghai and Beijing next week, but the gigs have now been ''unexpectedly cancelled'', promoters AEG Asia have announced.

Though no official reason has been given for the cancellation, it is thought to be due to the band using imagery of the Dalai Lama during previous shows in Taiwan in 2010.

The Financial Times' Beijing correspondent reported: ''The Communist party's Culture Ministry acted after discovering that Bon Jovi once included a picture of the Dalai Lama in a backdrop video during a concert in Taiwan in 2010, according to people familiar with the matter. That followed a band member's tweet about meeting the spiritual leader.''

The Chinese government are reportedly cracking down on Tibetan themes from visiting performers as this year is the 50th anniversary of Tibetan autonomy.

Bjork and Maroon 5 have also had concerts cancelled in China in recent years..

Bon Jovi are still scheduled to perform in Macau - which, like Hong Kong, is Special Administrative Region of China - later this month.