At least 39 pilgrims have died since the beginning of this year’s Hajj, when Muslims from all over the world travel to Mecca in Saudi Arabia, local media reported on Saturday.

The Okaz newspaper quoted the Saudi General Authority for Statistics as saying that most of the victims came to Mecca from Egypt and Algeria.

All of the deceased pilgrims were elderly people who died of natural causes, due to exacerbation of chronic diseases.

The Saudi Healthcare Ministry called on Muslims to refrain from attending Hajj if they suffer from chronic disorders.

More than 2,200 people have visited the hospital seeking medical assistance, said the hospital of the valley of Mina, which accommodates thousands of pilgrims during the Hajj.

In most of the cases, the patients were suffering from sunstroke or cardiac diseases or diabetes. The hospital also reported several small children who could not manage the physical toll of the pilgrimage amid record-breaking heat.

Hajj is one of the five pillars of Islam. Every Muslim man or woman is required to perform Hajj rituals at least once in a life time.

Each year, the pilgrimage to Mecca’s holy places brings together millions of Muslims. This year’s Hajj takes place between August 30 to September 4.