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External IDs - what manipulation of string does salesforce do?

I have two different strings as below. In apex code, says the these two strings are different - they indeed are - the comma are different - they regular (U+002C) and full space (U+FF0C) unicode commas. However, when I use the same strings as external id, salesforce complains of duplicate external ids.

String s1 = 'Tongling Nongferrous Metals Group Holdings Co., Ltd.';
String s2 = 'Tongling Nongferrous Metals Group Holdings Co., Ltd.';
boolean same = s1==s2;
System.Debug('Same is ' + same);

I put the string in quotes etc, none of that helps. Any known workarounds? Anyone knows what characters treats as equivalent?

Here is another example:

String s1 = '( Shanghang)';
String s2 = '( Shanghang)';

The two strings are different but treated the same for external id purposes....
Can someone from SFDC support comment on it? I filed case number 10800588 and the case was promptly closed saying I should seek support on the board and that SFDC support team  will respond.