Albanians (Muslims) is now in Southern Mexico and Latin America

Albanians (Muslims) is now in Southern Mexico and Latin America

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Albanians (Albanian: Shqiptarët) are an ethnic group, native to Albania, Kosovo and neighboring countries. The term is also used to refer to the citizens of the Republic of Albania.[38] Ethnic Albanians speak the Albanian language and more than half of ethnic Albanians live in Albania and Kosovo.[a] A large Albanian population lives in the Republic of Macedonia and Italy, with smaller Albanian populations located in Serbia and Montenegro. The majority of Albanians are nominally Muslims (mainly Sunni, with a smaller Shia, Sufi and Bektashi component), and a minority are nominally Christians (Catholic and Orthodox).

Albanians produced many prominent figures such as Skanderbeg, leader of the medieval Albanian resistance to the Ottoman conquest and others during the Albanian National Awakening seeking self-determination. During the 17th and 18th century Albanians in large numbers converted to Islam, often to escape higher taxes levied on Christian subjects.[39][40][41] As Muslims, some Albanians attained important political and military positions within the Ottoman Empire and culturally contributed to the wider Muslim world.[42] Albania gained its independence in 1912 and between 1945–1992, Albanians lived under a repressive communist regime. Albanians within Yugoslavia underwent periods of discrimination and eventual self-determination that concluded with the breakup of that state in the early 1990s culminating with Albanians living in new countries and Kosovo. Outside the southwestern Balkans of where Albanians have traditionally been located, Albanian populations through the course of history have formed new communities contributing to the cultural, economic, social and political life of their host populations and countries while also at times assimilating too.

Between the 11th and 18th centuries, sizable numbers of Albanians migrated from the area of contemporary Albania to escape either various socio-political difficulties and/or the Ottoman conquest.[43][44][45][46] One population which became the Arvanites settled down in southern Greece who starting from the 16th century though mainly during the 19th century onwards assimilated and today self identify as Greeks.[46][47][48][49][50][51] Another population, who became the Arbëreshë settled in southern Italy[44] and form the oldest continuous Albanian diaspora producing influential and many prominent figures. Smaller populations dating to migrations during the 18th century are located on Croatia’s Dalmatian coast and scattered communities across southern Ukraine.[52][53]

The Albanian diaspora also exists in a number of other countries. One of these is located in Turkey. It was formed during the Ottoman era through economic migration and early years of the Turkish Republic through migration due to sociopolitical discrimination and violence experienced by Albanians in Balkan countries.[54] Due to the Ottoman legacy, smaller populations of Albanians also exist in Egypt and the Levant, in particular Syria.[55] In Western countries, a large and influential Albanian population exists in the United States formed from continuous emigration dating back to the 19th century. Other Albanians populations due to emigration between the 19th and 21th centuries are located in Australia, Argentina, New Zealand, Canada, Germany, Belgium, United Kingdom, France, Sweden, Switzerland, Slovenia, Croatia, Italy, Finland, Denmark, Norway, Austria, Netherlands, Bulgaria, Greece and Romania.

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