RIYADH, Saudi Arabia -- Saudi Arabia says a man has died from MERS, the respiratory virus related to SARS, bringing to 64 the deaths in the kingdom at the centre of the outbreak.

The Health Ministry said the latest victim was a chronically ill 86-year-old Saudi man who died in Riyadh on Sunday.

The statement also says that five new cases of the virus have tested positive, bringing to 162 the number of people infected in the kingdom since September 2012.

The MERS virus is related to SARS, or severe acute respiratory syndrome, which killed some 800 people in a global outbreak in 2003. It belongs to a family of coronaviruses that most often cause the common cold.