When adding UTF-8 characters to configuration files like the dspace.cfg they are not loaded correctly by Apache Commons Configuration.
The reason why this occurs is that Apache Commons Confiuguration expects ISO-8859-1 encoded files.
We had similar problems #
with earlier versions of DSpace. DS-1528
The solution to this problem is to change the config-definition.xml to explicitly set the encoding to UTF-8.
I am preparing a pull request to fix this issue.