British rock band Oasis says Chinese authorities have banned them from China, canceling their concerts in Beijing and Shanghai just weeks before they were set to perform.
In a statement Tuesday, the band said they were disappointed and bewildered by the decision.
The band said Chinese authorities canceled the concert after learning that Oasis guitarist Noel Gallagher performed at what was called a Free Tibet benefit concert in New York more than 10 years ago.
However, the official Xinhua news agency quotes officials at China's Ministry of Culture denying they had anything to do with the cancellation.
The ministry said promoters of the concert canceled because of financial problems, and denied it banned Oasis from playing in Beijing and Shanghai.
China tightly regulates live performances and Tibet remains an extremely sensitive issue.
Chinese authorities have increased security in Tibetan communities ahead next Tuesday's (March 10th,) 50th anniversary of the failed Tibetan uprising against Chinese rule.
Last year, pro-independence demonstrations commemorating the 1959 uprising led to a deadly police crackdown.
On Monday, China published a paper on the situation in Tibet before and after 1959.
The report argues that before Chinese rule, the region was a feudal serfdom where most people suffered poverty, oppression and exploitation. The paper asserts that after 1959, the Chinese government launched a vigorous democratic reform to overthrow that system and liberate about one million serfs and slaves.
Critics say China has discriminated against Tibetans and tried to dilute their Buddhist culture since taking over the area in 1951.