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Ally of Opposition Icon Tymoshenko Voted Acting Ukraine President

Image: Parliament Speaker and newly-appointed interim president of Ukraine, Olexandr Turchynov attends a session at the Parliament in Kiev
Parliament Speaker and newly-appointed interim president of Ukraine, Alexander Turchynov attends a session at the Parliament in Kiev on Feb. 23, 2014. SERGEI SUPINSKY / AFP - Getty Images

KIEV, Ukraine - Ukraine's newly emboldened legislature has voted to hand the president's powers to an ally former Prime Minister Yulia Tymoshenko, the president's main foe who was freed from prison on Saturday.

The legitimacy of Sunday's overwhelming vote to make parliament speaker Alexander Turchynov acting president was unclear. President Viktor Yanukovych, who had left Kiev, has said that a flurry of parliament decisions in recent days are illegal.

Tymoshenko rallied thousands of protesters Saturday in Kiev's central Independence Square, but many in the crowd weren't convinced. She said she would run for president, but she got a relatively muted reception as a former two-time prime minister whose own political career had been marked by controversy.

- Reuters and The Associated Press contributed to this report.