Yep, I checked, all i18n files have been ruined by a commit in April 2008 that ruined each non ASCII char.
r8904, groldan, porting fix for
GEOS-1655 from 1.6.x to trunk
(I can see the extended chars before it, but not after. Of course you need a system with full international chars installed to view the difference, in mine I can even see Hebrew or Chinese properly because I installed every supported charset).
Apparently the port was followed with the inadverted commit of the i18n files on an operating system that does not use UTF8 for encoding the files (or else the files were edited with a non UTF8 aware editor).
I guess the only way to resurrect the files is to rollback to that revision and then fix the version numbers and so on. I noticed
that Didier made some changes to the French files (r8922, r8995, r9169), I'll try to resurrect them, but can you double check when I'm done?
Finally, given the change is so old, I'm very surprised we had no report about this problem before... all the betas and RCs, and nobody noticed? I mean, all languages using non ascii chars are affected... I'm puzzled.