What encoding did you set in your xhtml files?
What browser did you used and what encoding did they recognized?
Probaly you are using russian alphabetic specific characters on properties file, try converting those to unicode.
I had the same issue but in my case was brazilian portuguese so, I wrote a java swing application to do this job, you can download him from this link.
The encoding set in my xhtml files is UTF-8. I tested on all modern browsers and still had the same problem. The pages recognized UTF-8. I use Richfaces 3.3.3 GA with Facelets. Yesterday, I read that facelets has an issue which makes it escape unicode chaaracters before displaying them on the page. Could this be the reason? I tried everything. I first had russian alphabetic characters in the properties file. That didn't work. Then I converted to unicode but the unicode just appears on the page as is! This sounds like the escaping problem I mentioned above. Please help.
If I undertand right, the first line on your xhtml files is:
<?xml version="1.0" encoding="UTF-8"?>
In my language, brazilian portuguese, with that line I ended with a similiar issue and my way to fix this is change (or add) the first line on my xhtml files like this:
<?xml version="1.0" encoding="iso-8859-1"?>