Albania dating abroad
The post-communist period and the lifting of legal and other government restrictions on religion allowed Islam to revive through institutions that generated new infrastructure, literature, educational facilities, international transnational links and other social activities.According to 2011 census, 58.79% of Albania's population adheres to Islam, making it the largest religion in the country.During this time Albanian nationalists conceived of Albanians as a European people who under Skanderbeg resisted the Ottoman Turks that later subjugated and cut the Albanians off from Western European civilisation.Albanian nationalism overall was a reaction to the gradual breakup of the Ottoman Empire and a response to Balkan and Christian national movements that posed a threat to an Albanian population that was mainly Muslim.Some Orthodox Albanians began to affiliate with the Albanian National movement causing concern for Greece and they worked together with Muslim Albanians regarding shared social and geo-political Albanian interests and aims.
In the aftermath of World War Two, the communist regime came to power and Muslims, most from southern Albania were represented from early on within the communist leadership group such as leader Enver Hoxha 1908–1985), his deputy Mehmet Shehu (1913–1981) and others.
For contemporary Muslims in Albania, Muslim religious practices tend to be minimal. Lighter areas denote either Sunni (grass green) or Bektashi (cyan) pluralities.
Approximate distribution of religions in Albania during early 1900s, based on the 1908 Ottoman census and the 1916–18 Austro-Hungarian census. By the 19th century Albanians were divided into three religious groups.
This practice has somewhat continued amongst Balkan Christian peoples in contemporary times who still refer to Muslim Albanians as Turks, Turco-Albanians, with often pejorative connotations and historic negative socio-political repercussions.
Another factor overlaying these concerns during the Albanian National Awakening (Rilindja) period were thoughts that Western powers would only favour Christian Balkan states and peoples in the anti Ottoman struggle.
Due to this policy as with all other faiths in the country, Islam underwent radical changes.