The islands, which raise their own taxes but rely on the United Kingdom for defense and foreign policy, are one of 14 British Overseas Territories and have been under British rule since 1833.
More than 2,500 people from more than 60 nations live and work there, according to the government website, as well as forces stationed at the British military's Mount Pleasant Complex. Many Falkland Island residents are of British origin.
About 1,600 voters from the Falkland Islands were eligible to vote in the referendum, officials said.
Before results were announced, Halford said she didn't think the vote would put an end to Argentina's renewed bid for control of the islands.
"They've been saying for ages that they have no intention of recognizing it, whatever the outcome, which I find interesting because they've been going to horrendous lengths around the world to try and discredit it," Halford said.
For Argentina, she said, the islands are a "political football" used to distract Argentinians from problems at home.
On its official website, the Falklands government rejects as false the Argentinian government claim that a civilian population was expelled by Britain in 1833 and argues for the inhabitants' right to choose their path.
"We are not an implanted population," the government says. "Our community has been formed through voluntary immigration and settlement over the course of nearly 200 years. ... We are no more an implanted population than are the various populations of South America whose ancestors arrived as immigrants from Europe -- we arrived here as part of the same process and pattern of migration."
The islands are economically self-sufficient, the government says, except for the cost of defense needed as a result of "the claim made by an aggressive neighbour."
"The Falkland Islanders are a peaceful, hard-working and resilient people. Our society is thriving and forward-looking. All we ask is to be left in peace to choose our own future, and responsibly develop our home for our children and generations to come," the government says.