LIVE VIDEO: Tear Gas, Molotov Cocktails Used In Cairo Protests - Spokane, North Idaho News & Weather KHQ.com

LIVE VIDEO: Tear Gas, Molotov Cocktails Used In Cairo Protests

Cairo, Egypt (CNN) -- A dramatic and potentially deadly situation unfolded Wednesday at the epicenter of Cairo's demonstrations as pro- and anti-government forces clashed, and supporters of embattled President Hosni Mubarak thundered through the crowds on horses and camels in Tahrir Square.

At least one man was pulled off his horse and beaten.

People hurled verbal insults, rocks and anything else they could find -- shards of metal, sticks, shoes -- at one another. They beat each other in what quickly turned into utter mayhem. But despite the extremely volatile altercations, the police were nowhere to be seen and the army did little.

Blood streamed down the faces of some protesters, who were carried away from the square into a nearby makeshift clinic. Others climbed atop army tanks, waving flags and chanting loudly.

The melee erupted after pro-Mubarak demonstrators broke through a barricade separating them earlier from anti-government protesters who have been amassing for nine days in the downtown plaza that has become the symbol of Egypt's uprising.

Contesting rallies were also taking place further north in the Mediterranean city of Alexandria.

Earlier in Cairo, the crowds were smaller and the mood different on the streets the day after Mubarak announced his intention not to seek re-election and the military urged protesters to return the nation to normalcy.

"Your message is received ... (your) demands became known," a Defense Ministry spokesman said on state-run television. "And we are here and awake to protect the country for you ... not by power but by the love to Egypt. It is time to go back to normal life."

Angry Egyptians, fed up with Mubarak's rule, have camped out in the Egyptian capital's central plaza for a week. The burgeoning demonstrations led to the "march of millions" on Tuesday.

On Wednesday, the voices defending the government were louder. They called the media "traitors" and "agents" and said the country cannot survive without Mubarak. It was unclear how many were out on the streets from their own volition. Three employees of the national petroleum company told CNN they were forced to demonstrate Wednesday.

In a televised address Tuesday night, Mubarak announced he will not seek office again in elections scheduled for September, but vowed to stay in the country and finish his term.

"My first responsibility now is to restore the stability and security of the homeland, to achieve a peaceful transition of power in an environment that will protect Egypt and Egyptians, and which will allow for the responsibility to be given to whoever the people elect in the forthcoming elections," Mubarak said in a televised address Tuesday night.

The concession, large and remarkable for a man who has held a tight grip on power for three decades, may have been too little and too late for many Egyptians.

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