Finland crossed its last hurdle to joining NATO. Turkey approved the Scandinavian country’s bid to become a member of NATO on Thursday.

But it’s just Finland who is allowed to join, not Sweden — even though the two countries applied to join on the same day last year, The Washington Post reported.

Members of NATO must approve new members unanimously, and it took some time for Turkey to decide to let them in — but the country’s parliament voted unanimously in favor for Finland to join on Thursday, according to CNN.

What’s next for Finland and NATO?

The next step to be formally allied with fellow NATO countries is an invite from Jens Stoltenberg, the secretary-general of the alliance, “to accede to the Washington Treaty,” per the Post.

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After the announcement about Turkey, Stoltenberg tweeted his approval of the decision, saying, “I welcome the vote of the Grand National Assembly of #Türkiye to complete the ratification of #Finland’s accession. This will make the whole #NATO family stronger & safer,” 

The move will likely be seen as a “diplomatic setback” for Russia, because Finland shares a 830-mile border with Russia, and it puts Finland in a better position to provide a defense against possible Russian advances, according to The New York Times.

“Finland will contribute to allied deterrence and defense, and NATO’s area of operations will significantly grow,” Matti Pesu, security expert at the Finnish Institute of International Affairs, told the Times.

Why did it take so long to approve Finland to join NATO?

Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan had claimed Finland and Sweden were “housing Kurdish ‘terrorist organizations,’” and that was the reason the approval took so long to come. Hungarian Prime Minister Viktor Orban accused the two Scandinavian countries of telling “outright lies” about how the country was running a democracy, CNN reported.

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