The so-called riots, taking place in French suburbs in November 2005, reopened a public and academic debate on character of French immigration policy and its future. Article aims to outline a wider context of immigration issue in France by analysing both institutional and discursive aspects of construction of image of foreigner in historic relation of inter-national domination between dominant group represented by state and its republican model of integration and inferior group of the North African immigrants. Article considers some theoretical implications of the relations between a project of nation-state and institution of citizenship, which in France led to the genesis and evolution of assimilation model of integration. In such a framework, colonial discourse represent historically important example of construction of foreigner's image, which shaped later political debates on reconstitution and 'crises' of French nation-state. Moreover, history and development of French immigration policy is presented in context of some structural changes in labour market, which led to the establishment of new international division of labour and new kind of urban poverty. Concentration of the working-class poor immigrants in highly modernistic neighbourhoods and its spatial segregation is the most visible unintended consequence of French immigration policy. Special attention is paid to the reformulation of immigration issue as a security problem, which revived colonial discourse by reification of cultural differences and by ethnicization of the social relations. Instead of blaming second and third generation immigrants for their failure to integrate into major society, the unrests form in November 2005 should be understood as a specific form of political and cultural protest against their structural discrimination in work, housing and everyday life as a result of new image of the dangerous foreigners created by more restrictive measures of immigration policy.