Donald Trump asks boy, 7, if he still believes in Santa

SANTA TRACKER: Santa Claus is coming to town! | See where he is now

The call to American defense agency NORAD, which "tracks" Santa's movements around the world, was one of several answered by Trump and his wife Melania as part of a Christmas Eve tradition.

NORAD, a joint US and Canadian command responsible for aerospace and maritime control and warning missions, is "on duty 24/7, 365 days a year...committed to protect the citizens of both our countries", the agency said in a statement.

In another phone call, Trump took a child's belief in Santa as a given.

"What's Santa going to get you for Christmas?" However, on the day before Christmas they track Santa as he begins his journey in the South Pacific.

Santa does not want to rush the important job of delivering presents to children and spreading Christmas joy around the world.

President Donald Trump and First Lady Melania attended a worship services on Christmas Eve. He listened for a moment before adding, "Because at 7, it's marginal, right?"

The president and first lady found a festive way to keep busy at the White House during the government shutdown that kept them in Washington: They fielded kids' calls to Santa Claus. "But other than that, I wish everyone a very merry Christmas".

Commanding officer US Air Force Colonel Harry Shoup was bewildered to receive a number of calls from children eager to speak to Santa. "Thank you. Nice talking to you", she told one caller.

In the 1980s, NORAD published a hotline number children could call to get updates on Santa's progress.

The North American Aerospace Defense Command (NORAD) has expanded their reindeer-tracking abilities this year.

NORAD says its command centre's Defense Support Program satellites use an infrared sensor to detect heat signatures from Rudolph's nose to provide accurate tracking of the sleigh.

There's also a selection of "Santa Cam" videos, which document such things as his initial spotting at the North Pole.

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