Syrian Druze living in the Golan Heights once burned identity cards offered by the Israeli government which annexed the area in 1981, however following nineteen months of civil war in Syria that has left an estimated 25,000 people dead many Druze residents are reconsidering the offer.
The Israeli Interior Ministry has said that recent requests for Israeli citizenship from Druze inhabitants of the Golan Heights has increased dramatically, despite a declaration by Druze leaders in 1982 that anyone seeking to become Israeli would be ostracized from their communities.
The Druze are a monotheistic religious community that incorporates elements of Islam, Judaism, Christianity and other philosophies, of the 2 million Druze worldwide, most live in Syria, Lebanon and Israel.
Of the 20,000 Druze believed to live in the Golan Heights only 10% have taken Israeli citizenship. Most of these are believed to be youths whose ties to Syria are generations distant, whilst others do not want to be associated with the Assad regime which many accuse of killing its own people.
The Druze have long been protected in Syria and many fear they will be persecuted if President Bashar al-Assad is deposed.