hijabi doll barbie
Ibtihaj Muhammad. Source: Twitter.

A hijabi doll was launched on Monday by the American group Mattel to honour Muslim US Olympic fencer Ibtihaj Muhammad.

Ibtihaj, in 2016, emerged the first American Olympian to wear a headscarf while competing. She also became the first Muslim American woman to win an Olympic medal, clinching a bronze medal in team Saber in the same year.

Her achievement inspired the toymaker to model a doll after her.

The hijabi doll which is dressed in fencing gear, as well as the hijab to look like the athlete, is a part of the toymaker’s ‘Sheroes’ collection.

A spokeswoman told AFP that the doll will hit the market in 2018.

The Barbie makers posted a photo of the doll and wrote on social media, “We are so excited to honor @IbtihajMuhammad with a one-of-a-kind Barbie doll! Ibtihaj continues to inspire women and girls everywhere to break boundaries.”

Mattel said on its website that the new Barbie is an “inspiration for countless little girls who never saw themselves represented in sports and culture,” adding that it hopes the doll “shows girls they can be anything.”

The 31-year-old Olympian medalist describes Mattel’s creation as ‘very moving’ and a ‘childhood dream come true.’

She tweeted: “Thank you @Mattel for announcing me as the newest member of the @Barbie Shero family! I’m proud to know that little girls everywhere can now play with a Barbie who chooses to wear hijab!”