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The Arbëreshë were offered refuge by the Kingdom of Naples and Kingdom of Sicily (both under Aragonese rule) and given their own villages and protection.

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The Arbëreshë are scattered throughout southern Italy and Sicily, and in small numbers also in other parts of Italy.They are in great numbers in North and Latin America, especially in the USA, Brazil, Argentina, Chile, Uruguay and Canada.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 (the Arbanasi community) and scattered communities across southern Ukraine.) have been identified by many ethnonyms.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 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.

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 as well as a plethora of other reasons including ecclesiastical decay, and from 1945 to 1992 Albanians lived under a communist government.

Albanians are not recognized as a minority in Turkey.

However approximately 500,000 people are reported to profess an Albanian identity.

Rights to use the Albanian language in education and government were given and guaranteed by the 1974 Constitution of SFRY and were widely utilized in Macedonia and in Montenegro before the Dissolution of Yugoslavia.